An FBI agent contacted a top Twitter executive hours before The Post published its first exposé about Hunter Biden’s questionable overseas business dealings in October 2020, according to the seventh installation of Elon Musk’s “Twitter Files,” raising questions about what the bureau told the social media outlet about the story.
FBI San Francisco Special Agent Elvis Chan sent 10 documents to Twitter’s former Head of Site Integrity Yoel Roth and at least one other person on the night of Oct. 13 via a special one-way communications channel, according to independent journalist Michael Shellenberger. Chan asked Roth and his colleagues to confirm they had received the documents.
Approximately two-and-a-half hours earlier, Shellenberger went on, Hunter Biden attorney George Mesires had called and emailed Delaware computer repair shop owner John Paul Mac Isaac after learning from The Post the first article based on files recovered from the abandoned laptop would be published the next day.
“I am a lawyer for Hunter Biden and I appreciate you reviewing your records on this matter,” Mesires wrote to Mac Isaac.
It is not clear what was in the documents Chan emailed to Roth, who played a key role in suppressing The Post’s bombshell.
But the timing is uncanny and, as Shellenberger reported, Chan’s action was in keeping with a larger effort by the FBI to squelch speech on the platform in the name of guarding against “foreign interference in elections.”
Roth said three months later in a sworn declaration that the feds had primed him to dismiss reports of the soon-to-be first son’s laptop as a “Russian ‘hack and leak’ operation,” but Chan later admitted under oath that the warnings were overblown, Shellenberger wrote on Twitter Monday.
Catch up on Twitter’s censorship of The Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story
“Through our investigations, we did not see any similar competing intrusions to what had happened in 2016,” Chan said in a sworn deposition last month in connection with a lawsuit filed by Missouri and Louisiana alleging the federal government and Biden administration leaned on social media companies to suppress speech.
Chan also insisted that no one had mentioned Hunter Biden’s laptop to him before The Post broke the story and that he had not discussed it with anyone at Twitter.
Twitter owner Elon Musk says he’s pulling back the curtain on how the social network has handled high-profile content moderation decisions, including banning then-President Donald Trump after his supporters attacked the US Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
Over the past two weeks, Musk has been releasing internal documents to a handpicked group of journalists who are digging through them and posting excerpts on Twitter.
Musk and his allies promote these tweet threads — dubbed the “Twitter Files” — as bombshell revelations proving that Twitter intentionally muzzled conservatives because of their political views.