12:18 GMT30 November 2020
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    In the wake of reports made in the New York Post regarding the Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, and his alleged corrupt business deals in Ukraine, Donald Trump has been increasingly raising the issue as the presidential campaign switches into high gear.

    During a campaign rally in Prescott, Arizona, Donald Trump slammed his rival in the upcoming November presidential elections, Democratic candidate Joe Biden, as “corrupt”, reproaching his son Hunter Biden as having the “laptop from hell”.

    “Joe Biden is always and has been a corrupt politician, and as far as I'm concerned the Biden family is a criminal enterprise,” Trump said.

    ‘Laptop from Hell’

    Hunter Biden’s overseas business dealings have been the subject of intense scrutiny of late, including his ties to the Ukrainian company Burisma, which he made while Joe Biden, as vice president, was responsible for Ukraine policy during the Obama administration.

    Allegations of corruption flared anew after a New York Post report about Joseph R. Biden Jr. and his son Hunter.

    U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden (File)
    © AP Photo / Visar Kryeziu
    U.S. Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden (File)

    The story referenced emails, the authenticity of which has not been proven, showing that Hunter Biden introduced his then-Vice President father to a top executive at a Ukrainian energy firm less than a year before the elder Biden allegedly pressured government officials in Ukraine into firing a prosecutor who was investigating the company.

    The correspondence, which refuted Joe Biden’s earlier claim that he had “never spoken to my son about his overseas business dealings”, was gleaned from a trove of data recovered from a laptop computer left at a Delaware shop; a copy of the hard drive was given to Trump's personal lawyer, Rudy Giuliani.

    The alleged emails included one that alluded to a meeting between Joe Biden and Vadym Pozharsky, an adviser for the Ukrainian gas company Burisma, where Hunter Biden served on the board. The Biden campaign is insisting the meeting never took place.

    “So a giant trove of emails show Hunter Biden making deals, setting up deals with his father Joe… Joe's getting a piece of everything, said Trump at one point during the event.

    The US President, who trails Biden in national opinion polls and in some battleground states, said at the Arizona rally:

    “If you read this laptop, I tell you what, this is called the laptop from hell. The only laptop that was almost as good, maybe worse, was the laptop of Anthony Weiner. Remember that? Ding-ding-ding-ding. He got hacked too,” Trump told his crowd of supporters.

    The US President, who is scheduled to campaign daily leading up to the final debate ahead of the elections in Nashville, Tennessee on 22 October, reminded his supporters of the role Weiner’s computer played in reigniting the Clinton email scandal.

    “[Weiner] was sending messages to very, very young women — girls, girls, excuse me, girls. He was sending messages, a lot of them, and he 'got hacked'… You know, I've never known a person that said he got hacked, that got hacked.”

    Donald Trump was referring to the contents of Anthony Weiner's computer, which played its role in Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign in the weeks leading up to the 2016 election.

    In July 2015, the FBI launched an investigation into "potential unauthorised transmission and storage of classified information" on Clinton's email server, revealing that a substantial number of her correspondences contained classified information.

    However, the year-long probe resulted in then-FBI Director James Comey recommending that no charges be brought against Clinton in July 2016, while her actions were deemed “extremely careless.”

    Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign received a jolt after federal law enforcement officials discovered emails pertinent to the closed investigation into the Democratic candidate’s private email server on a computer belonging to Anthony D. Weiner, the estranged husband of top Clinton aide Huma Abedin.

    The FBI had seized Weiner's laptop over allegations of inappropriate relationships with a 15-year-old girl.

    During Monday's rally, Donald Trump said that he had sought to make sure his own children were not involved with foreign projects that might be seen as corrupt.

    “Can you imagine if Don Jr. had the problems of “Where's Hunter?” Trump queried.

    “But they went after my kids and I restrict them from doing things. I mean, can you imagine the money my kids could get? "Dad, let's build a hotel in Saudi Arabia." I restricted them, I said you can't do anything,” said Trump.

    Donald Trump and Joe Biden have been campaigning ahead of the final presidential debate set for 22 October in Nashville, Tennessee, where they will spar over issues of race relations, climate change, COVID-19, and others, according to the Commission on Presidential Debates.

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    Tags:
    Hillary Clinton, Anthony Weiner, US Election 2020, Joe Biden, Donald Trump
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