Indicted FBI Informant Re-Arrested Under ‘Bizarre Circumstances,’ His Lawyers Say
Close up of the FBI logo on a black cap. The text stands for Federal Bureau of Investigations.
(Photo by Roberto Machado Noa/LightRocket via Getty Images)

A longtime FBI informant accused in an indictment of fabricating a multi-million dollar bribery scheme involving President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden has been re-arrested after a judge allowed his release, the man’s attorneys said on Thursday.

Lawyers for Alexander Smirnov, a 43-year-old dual U.S.-Israeli citizen who served as an FBI source for more than a decade, filed an emergency motion in Nevada’s federal court that said their client was arrested for a second time on the same charges while at their law office for meetings with counsel.

The filing insisted Smirnov was taken back into custody under “bizarre circumstances” while pointing out a lack of filings from the judge in the docket in California. Smirnov’s lawyers requested an immediate detention hearing to seek the release of their client. A copy of the arrest warrant shows it was issued by District Judge Otis Wright II in the Central District of California, where federal prosecutors asked a judge to reconsider the release this week.

Special counsel David Weiss, who is leading the criminal inquiry into Hunter Biden, announced last week that a federal grand jury in California returned an indictment charging Smirnov with false statement and obstruction crimes. He also said Smirnov had been arrested at the international airport in Las Vegas upon his arrival in the United States from overseas.

The charges stem from Smirnov coming forward during the 2020 election cycle with claims that executives with Burisma Holdings, a Ukrainian gas company that employed Hunter Biden on its board for several years, paid $5 million in bribes to the Bidens when Joe Biden was vice president.

A conviction may result in 25 years in prison.

On Tuesday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Daniel Albregts of Nevada permitted Smirnov’s release from custody with GPS monitoring while telling him to surrender his U.S. and Israeli passports. The judge also ordered Smirnov to stay in Clark County, Nevada, except to go to Los Angeles for court appearances and to prepare for his case, and barred trips to the airport.

Prosecutors had argued Smirnov should remain detained pending trial, citing his alleged links to foreign intelligence operations, including that of Russia, and warned Smirnov poses a “serious” risk of fleeing with access to over $6 million in “liquid funds” and has the ability to obtain a new Israeli passport. One day after Smirnov’s release, Weiss and his team asked Wright for a review of Albregts’ order of bail.


Lawyers for Smirnov said in their filing on Thursday that their client has not left Clarke County, Nevada, since his release on Tuesday and noted “the fact that the Defendant was attending a legal consultation meeting at his attorneys’ office contradicts the notion that he is a risk of flight. It also highlights the interference with his cherished Sixth Amendment rights.”

In response to the magistrate judge asking Weiss and his team for a response by Friday afternoon, former federal prosecutor Andrew Weissmann said, “Weiss is playing with fire here-he can appeal the Magistrate’s decision to release Smirnov (and has done so), but arresting him on the same case the Magistrate released him on smacks of impropriety. Understandable the Magistrate wants to know what justifies this.”

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Indicted FBI Informant Re-Arrested Under ‘Bizarre Circumstances,’ His Lawyers Say