Hunter Biden has filed a lawsuit against Rudy Giuliani and attorney Robert Costello, alleging a breach of privacy and unauthorized hacking of data from an external hard drive connected to his laptop.
The lawsuit, which was filed on Tuesday, claims that Giuliani and Costello dedicated an extensive amount of time and effort to accessing, tampering with, copying, and disseminating data from the hard drive, which they were given access to in 2020.
Giuliani, a prominent figure in Republican circles, has long sought to portray Hunter Biden as a corrupt businessman who capitalized on his father’s political influence. He and Costello maintained that the hard drive was obtained from a Delaware computer repair shop owner, John Paul Mac Isaac, who asserted that Hunter Biden left the laptop for repair in the previous year and never returned to collect it. In a twist, Hunter Biden also filed a lawsuit against Mac Isaac in May, with Mac Isaac vehemently denying any wrongdoing and asserting that he obtained the laptop legally.
The lawsuit against Giuliani and Costello alleges that they used Hunter Biden’s username to gain unauthorized access to his data, creating copies and sharing it with political allies, including Steve Bannon. At the time of reporting, Giuliani and Costello have not responded to requests for comments regarding the lawsuit.
The data extracted from the hard drive has fueled a steady stream of revelations about Hunter Biden’s personal and professional life, making headlines in conservative media and leading to Republican allegations of corruption. However, the lawsuit contends that some of the data was “tampered with, manipulated,” and “altered.”
Giuliani’s own statements on his podcast and nightly YouTube show, in which he openly discussed his access to the data, are cited in the lawsuit. During a February 2, 2023 episode of “America’s Mayor Live,” Giuliani held up a laptop, stating, “This belongs to Hunter Biden,” and boasted about copying and manipulating the data.
Last year, Brian Della Rocca, an attorney representing Mac Isaac, provided CBS News with an “exact copy” of the laptop data given to federal investigators in 2019.
An independent analysis conducted by cyber investigators found no evidence of data modification, fabrication, or tampering. Nevertheless, reports in other media outlets, including The Washington Post, suggested that some versions of the hard drive had data added after April 2019, indicating possible tampering.
This lawsuit is the latest development in Hunter Biden’s ongoing efforts to push back against allegations of corruption and misinformation propagated by Republicans. In February, his attorney, Abbe Lowell, sent letters to 14 prominent Republican media personalities and former officials, notifying them of a litigation hold for the preservation of records related to Hunter Biden.
In recent times, both Giuliani and Hunter Biden have faced mounting legal challenges. Giuliani was indicted by a Fulton County, Georgia grand jury on August 15, along with former President Donald Trump and 17 others, on charges related to their efforts to overturn the state’s 2020 presidential election results.
A month later, Hunter Biden was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges related to his alleged firearm purchase in October 2018 while reportedly using drugs. Giuliani and Hunter Biden have each entered not guilty pleas in their respective cases, vehemently denying any wrongdoing.
The once-close friendship between Giuliani and Costello, which spanned nearly half a century, has appeared to fracture, with Costello suing Giuliani on September 19. Costello alleges that Giuliani owes his law firm nearly $1.4 million in unpaid legal fees, a claim that Giuliani has described as personally hurtful. Costello, in response, asserted that Giuliani had taken “the low road.”
The legal saga surrounding Hunter Biden, Giuliani, and their associates continues to captivate the nation, with each development unfolding against a backdrop of intense political scrutiny.