Hunter Biden, the son of former Vice President Joe Biden, holds a stake in a Chinese surveillance company sanctioned by the U.S. for its alleged involvement in the country's systematic repression of Uighurs and other Muslim minorities, the Washington Free Beacon reported Wednesday.
The news raises further questions about the Biden family's controversial business dealings in China and casts doubt on Democratic nominee Joe Biden's ability to stand up to China on the world stage should he be elected president.
In the report, the Free Beacon noted:
Bohai Harvest RST Shanghai Equity, an investment firm that Hunter Biden owns a stake in, initially invested in Megvii, a sanctioned Chinese tech company that specializes in facial recognition software, in 2017, according to the company's website. The firm holds a nearly 2 percent stake in Megvii through two holding companies, according to a prospectus filed by Megvii as part of its application for a listing on the Hong Kong stock exchange last year.
Megvii, known for its core product, Face++, was added to a the U.S. Commerce Department blacklist last year for "human rights violations and abuses in the implementation of China's campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, and high-technology surveillance against Uighurs, Kazakhs, and other members of Muslim minority groups in Xinjiang."
Hunter Biden's investment in the company was confirmed as part of a new bombshell documentary on BlazeTV, titled "Riding the Dragon: Uncovering the Bidens' Chinese Secrets." The documentary unveils largely unreported details about Hunter Biden's business ventures in China — which even benefitted the Chinese military — while his father, then the vice president, led U.S. policy efforts in the country.
The film highlights a 2019 report by journalist Lee Fang at The Intercept that details Hunter Biden's lucrative investment in the company through his private equity firm, Bohai Harvest.
After publication, a spokesperson for Megvii told the Free Beacon that no actual capital behind Bohai Harvest's investment came directly from Hunter Biden or any individuals in the U.S., but declined to provide additional details on record.
"The two BHR special purpose vehicles (SPVs) that invested in Megvii, BHR Investment Fund II and BHR Investment Fund VI, are capitalized by a small group of Chinese investors," said the spokesperson. "There is no U.S. investment in either of the SPVs, including funds originating with Hunter Biden, according to BHR materials provided to Megvii."
He's still profiting
The Free Beacon notes that though Biden has since stepped down from the board of the firm, "he still owns a 10 percent stake in the investment firm through his U.S.-based limited liability company Skaneateles LLC, according to corporate records from China's official company database."
While Biden has no legal obligation to divest from Megvii, the fact that he may be aiding the persecution of minorities in China by funding technology sanctioned for human-rights abuses is a cause for concern — especially as his father campaigns for president.
"Riding the Dragon" is available for viewing to subscribers on BlazeTV.com and will also be released to the general public in eight 10-minute "Chapters" on the BlazeTV YouTube channel throughout the week. Those who subscribe to BlazeTV's YouTube channel and click on the notification bell will receive notifications when each chapter is released.
RIDING THE DRAGON: Uncovering the Bidens' Chinese Secrets (Preview) youtu.be
Editor's Note: This article has been updated to include a response from a spokesperson for Megvii.