Former Ukrainian Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin told Fox News in an exclusive interview that he was fired during the Obama administration for investigating Burisma, the energy firm whose board Hunter Biden served on.
During the interview with Fox News' Brian Kilmeade. Shokin said it is his "firm personal conviction" that he was fired because then-Vice President Biden and Hunter were bribed. Former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko ousted Shokin in 2016 – he was hired a year prior – due to Shokin's alleged corruption and pressure from the U.S. government led by Biden.
"I have said repeatedly in my previous interviews that Poroshenko fired me at the insistence of the then Vice President Biden because I was investigating Burisma," Shokin said in the interview.
"[Poroshenko] understood and so did Vice President Biden, that had I continued to oversee the Burisma investigation, we would have found the facts about the corrupt activities that they were engaging in. That included both Hunter Biden and Devon Archer and others."
Shokin added that he believed both Joe and Hunter Biden received bribes in connection to the case, though he didn't provide proof of that accusation.
"I do not want to deal in unproven facts, but my firm personal conviction is that, yes, this was the case," he added. "They were being bribed. And the fact that Joe Biden gave away $1 billion in U.S. money in exchange for my dismissal, my firing – isn't that alone a case of corruption?"
"For years, these false claims have been debunked, and no matter how much air time Fox gives them, they will remain false," White House spokesperson Ian Sams responded to Fox News. "Fox is giving a platform for these lies to a former Ukrainian prosecutor general whose office his own deputy called ‘a hotbed of corruption,’ drawing demands for reform not only from then-Vice President Biden but also from U.S. diplomats, international partners, and Republican senators like Ron Johnson."
One year after leaving the White House, Biden boasted about how he personally put pressure on Poroshenko to fire Shokin. He explained that he told Ukrainian officials the U.S. would withhold up to $1 billion in aid money earmarked for their country if Shokin remained in his position.
"I said, ‘Nah, I’m not going to – we’re not going to give you the billion dollars.’ They said, ‘You have no authority. You’re not the president. The president said –.' I said, ‘Call him.’" Biden remarked during a January 2018 event hosted by the Council on Foreign Relations. "I said, ‘I’m telling you, you’re not getting the $1 billion.’"
"I said, ‘You’re not getting the billion. I’m going to be leaving here,'" Biden continued. "I looked at them and said, ‘I’m leaving in six hours. If the prosecutor is not fired, you’re not getting the money.’ Well, son of a bitch, he got fired. And they put in place someone who was solid at the time."
The former prosecutor general told Fox News that Burisma illegally produced, sold and utilized natural gas supplies.
His investigation took place while Hunter Biden served on the Burisma board of directors. Hunter joined the firm in 2014 and departed in 2019 after his term on its board expired.
Hunter's former business partner Devon Archer, who also served on Burisma's board, testified in a closed-door House Oversight Committee hearing in July that, amid pressure from Shokin's office and other entities investigating Burisma, company leaders turned to Hunter for help. Archer said Hunter "called D.C." to help get Shokin fired.
…Witnesses begin to speak…
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