An Arkansas judge has ruled that Hunter Biden must make himself available for a March deposition in connection to his ongoing child support battle with a former stripper, despite his attempts to postpone the matter until April, according to court papers and a report from the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette.
Continue Reading Below
Independence County Circuit Court Judge Holly Meyer handed down the order during a Wednesday afternoon conference call, the Gazette reported.
“He needs to make himself available and unless his hair is on fire, he needs to be in Arkansas and he needs to be in a deposition,” Meyer told attorneys during the call, according to the outlet.
Biden has been embroiled in a legal battle over how much child support he should pay to Lunden Roberts, who has primary custody of their toddler. The pair met in 2016 at a Washington, D.C., strip club where Roberts worked, Page Six reported at the time.
Meanwhile, multiple outlets have reported that Biden and his wife, Melissa Cohen Biden, are expecting their first child together.
The son of Democratic presidential contender and former Vice President Joe Biden previously agreed to the unidentified amount to be paid once a month, and on the first of each month, previously released court papers show.
However, the designated child support amount will likely change, as the court goes through Biden's financial information, which was needed to determine how much child support should be paid to Roberts each month.
Throughout the court battle, Biden had largely evaded the topic of money and failed to provide Roberts and her attorney with financial documents that were being requested through discovery.
Court records filed by Biden’s attorney, Brent Langdon, indicate he "supplemented his discovery" information on Feb. 17, one day before the deadline.
On Tuesday, Langdon filed several documents, including an email exchange with Roberts’ attorneys, who asked if Biden could plan to be available for a March 3 or March 5 deposition and telling him that if Biden had not picked a day by Feb. 17 at 5 p.m., they would pick.
“My client can be available April 1, 2020,” Langdon responded on Feb. 18. “My client cannot be available prior to that date.”
Despite Langdon’s protest, Roberts’ attorneys filed a “Notice of Deposition” for the March 5 date on Feb. 24, which prompted Langdon to make the attempt to “quash” the plan.
Langdon called the attorneys’ expectation that Biden be present for deposition on March 5 – only 10 days from notice’s filing – “unduly burdensome and oppressive,” court papers show.
But Meyer wasn’t buying it.
“My question to you is, why could your client not be available until after April 1? All the information I have is that he’s unemployed,” she said during the call, according to the Gazette. Meyer ultimately ruled Biden must be present for a deposition on either March 11 or March 12, the outlet reported.
The trial on the matter is scheduled for May.
Biden’s financial records are expected to include those related to his involvement in Ukrainian company Burisma Holdings.
He was reportedly named a paid board member of Burisma in April 2014. The company's founder was a political ally of Viktor Yanukovych, Ukraine's Russia-friendly president, who was driven out in February 2014. Yanukovych's ouster prompted the Obama administration to move quickly to deepen ties with Ukraine's new government. Joe Biden, the vice president at the time, traveled to Ukraine and spoke frequently with its new Western-friendly president, Petro Poroshenko.
There is no evidence of wrongdoing by either Biden.
Trump’s July phone call with recently elected Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, during which he allegedly pressured the president to work with former associate U.S. attorney general and White House lawyer Rudy Giuliani, to investigate Joe Biden, Trump's potential rival in a presidential election later this year, and Hunter Biden, was recently at the center of the impeachment controversy.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.