A consulting firm linked to Hunter Biden – and co-founded by a former member of the Clinton administration -- is facing a Justice Department investigation into potential illegal lobbying activity, according to a report.
Blue Star Strategies, based in Washington, D.C., is facing U.S. government scrutiny over work it conducted on behalf of Burisma, a Ukrainian energy company where Hunter Biden was a board member, Politico reported.
Blue Star allegedly did not disclose its work for Burisma in any federal lobbying databases, the report said. Such disclosures would have included the starting and ending dates for the firm’s work for Burisma, according to Politico.
The investigation into Blue Star was not previously reported, the news outlet claimed, adding that sources said grand jury activity has occurred in connection with the case.
There is no indication that Hunter Biden is a focus of the investigation into Blue Star, the report added. Blue Star co-founder Karen Tramontano testified that Biden, the 51-year-old son of President Biden, was not involved in directing Blue Star’s work for Burisma, according to the report.
In addition to co-founding Blue Star, Tramontano served as deputy White House chief of staff under former President Bill Clinton.
Burisma hired Blue Star sometime after September 2015, when Geoffrey Pyatt, then the U.S. ambassador to Ukraine, asserted that Burisma was corrupt and criticized a Ukrainian prosecutor for allegedly helping Ukrainian natural resources minister Mykola Zlochevsky recover $23 million that British authorities had seized from him, Politico reported.
Burisma was put in contact with Blue Star through Devon Archer, a business associate of Hunter Biden’s who also served on the Burisma board with Biden, the report said.
Blue Star officials met with U.S. government officials as part of their work for Burisma – without disclosing to the U.S. officials that they were working for Burisma, Politico reported.
Tramontano told a Capitol Hill hearing in 2020 that when she first spoke with Archer about Burisma she did not know that Biden was serving on Burisma’s board at the time and didn’t recall when she first learned of Biden’s board position. She added that she was acquainted with Biden before Blue Star added Burisma as a client, according to Politico.
In November 2019, the Wall Street Journal reported that documents indicate Blue Star mentioned Hunter Biden’s connection to Burisma as the firm tried to arrange a meeting with the U.S. State Department.
Then Blue Star "mentioned him again during the meeting as part of an effort to improve Burisma’s image in Washington," the Journal reported.
Burisma factored into the first impeachment case against former President Trump. The case was based on a phone call between Trump and Ukraine’s president, in which Trump sought help for his lawyer Rudy Giuliani’s investigation into Hunter Biden’s ties to Burisma – prompting the U.S. House to charge Trump with abuse of power and obstruction of Congress.
The U.S. Senate later acquitted Trump.
Neither Blue Star, Hunter Biden, nor Tramontano responded to Politico’s requests for comment. The Justice Department’s National Security Division declined to comment, Politico added.
Meanwhile, Hunter Biden is facing investigation by the Delaware U.S. Attorney’s Office for potential tax violations, Fox News previously reported.