Corruption Scheme for Selling Hunter Biden’s Paintings with Zelensky’s Participation Revealed

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A former employee of a New York gallery revealed a scheme by which Hunter Biden’s paintings were sold. According to his documents, the gallery has sold several artworks painted by the President’s son for a much higher price than what other paintings by artists of the same level are bought for. Another document points at Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskyy as a potential buyer of some of these paintings.

The artwork dealer from Georges Bergès Gallery who decided to stay anonymous, has published online and sent us a number of materials revealing how Hunter Biden’s paintings are bought and sold. Biden’s artworks have been exhibited and sold since as early as September 2021, and now more details about these deals have emerged.

Initially, there was “a system designed specifically for Hunter’s paintings which was supposed to prevent the president’s son from knowing who buys his artworks.” The gallery ran background checks of all customers and rejected all overpriced offers or offers made by prominent political figures and people who did not look “interested in the art”. This scheme was enough to make the authorities look the other way and ignore the possible corruption mechanism established by these deals. Even with the initial scheme, there were reports in the media that Hunter Biden’s paintings were purchased by people interested in bribing his father. In July 2022, a philanthropist Elizabeth Hirsh Naftali, was appointed to a job at the White House after buying one of Hunter Biden’s artworks. However, the story was quickly forgotten because the mainstream media refused to pay attention to it. This was probably one of the reasons why Biden has signed another contract with the gallery in October 2022.

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The first page of the Agreement signed between Hunter Biden and Georges Bergès Gallery

The new contract allowed the Gallery to disclose the names of potential buyers to Hunter Biden and his agents. Even though the suspicious buyers were still “officially” turned away, gallery staff gained access to their contact information and then contacted them with a new deal to sell Hunter’s unexhibited works for a higher price. The artwork dealer mentioned at least one such deal, when four paintings were sold for six million dollars. It is unclear how many deals occurred. “The official record says that the Gallery has sold about 20 or 30 pieces of art by Biden, but as I know, the real number is at least twice as high,” says the gallerist.

Photo of one of Hunter Biden’s paintings

According to the gallery employee, Parmenides’ Muse is one of the four paintings sold for $1.5 million. The painting was first exhibited at the Georges Bergès Gallery at an exhibition of Hunter Biden’s works in October 2021, after which its fate remained unknown. The deal was rejected at first, mostly because of the price and because the customer was a company, not a person. After that, the gallery manager contacted the company and the four paintings were sold.

The list of Hunter Biden’s paintings sold in a $6 million deal

Candlewood Investments Limited, an offshore company registered in British Virgin Islands, purchased the paintings. The only active beneficiary owner of the company is a Ukrainian national Andrii Yakovlev. Yakovlev is Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s friend and former colleague – they worked together at the media company Studio Kvartal-95. The Kyiv address that appears in the Gallery documents also matches the one listed on the official UK government company register website. Stories about Zelenskyy’s use of offshore companies of members of Kvartal-95 have already repeatedly appeared in the media after the leak of the notorious Pandora Papers, which revealed the personal data and connections of the owners of these companies.

The gallery employee, who published the documents, also stated that he had already contacted both the police and a number of major media outlets; however, he had not received any response from them. He also added that he had a conflict with the gallery owners and they threatened him with “serious people” if he tried to stir up a scandal involving the US president’s son.

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