Enter Oleksandr Onyshchenko, fugitive oligarch, Olympic showjumper, and former Ukrainian MP — and another of the baroque characters on the fringes of the story of President’s Trump’s attempts to get Ukrainian dirt on the Bidens. Last November, Onyshchenko told an obscure German website, Creative Destruction Media, that Hunter got millions of dollars in ‘off the books’ payments when he worked at the Ukrainian oil and gas company Burisma. ‘There were official and unofficial payments to the Biden family.’ He claims this was covered up by the US embassy in Kiev and by ‘other Deep State American government assets in-country’.

Onyshchenko apparently told this story to a visiting reporter from the New York Times but they did not find it convincing enough to publish. He was planning to come to the US to appear on a conservative news channel, One America News Network, but then he got arrested in Germany on a Ukrainian warrant and is currently fighting extradition back to his home country. There he is accused of embezzling $80 million, charges is says were brought only because he fell out with Ukraine’s then president. He published a book saying that his job in the Ukrainian government was to pay bribes to members of parliament, so much money that the cash was carried out in black duffel bags. Cockburn spoke to Onyshchenko several times before his untimely arrest. He said that he did indeed have a story to tell about Hunter Biden — and had in fact told it President Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani. Other sources said that he had taken Giuliani on as his own lawyer.