© Getty Images/ Nicholas Kamm
Explosive bribery allegations involving Joe Biden and foreign nationals were brought to the Department of Justice as early as 2018, two years before similar allegations against the president were made by the whistleblower now talking to the House Oversight Committee.

Bud Cummins, a former federal prosecutor, first reported the bribery allegations to then-New York US Attorney Geoff Berman on Oct. 4, 2018, in an email claiming he had evidence that Joe Biden had "exercised influence to protect" his son's Ukrainian employer "in exchange for payments to Hunter Biden, Devon Archer, and Joe Biden."

In the email obtained by John Solomon's Just The News, Cummins said that Ukraine's then-Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko wanted to travel to the United States to meet Berman, and could produce two "John Doe" witnesses to corroborate his claims about the Bidens.

But Berman never responded to the email.

Instead, in a move Cummins says seemed like "retaliation," on Dec. 9, 2019, in the middle of impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump, federal prosecutors secretly obtained data from Cummins' iPhone with a grand jury subpoena to Apple.

"I can't really imagine a legitimate reason for the DOJ not to follow up on an offer like that. I felt like it was stonewalled," said Cummins, formerly Arkansas' chief federal prosecutor under President George W. Bush.

"It doesn't make much sense to investigate the guy who brings you the allegation rather than the allegation," he said.

When he received a notice from Apple last October telling him that his data had been accessed three years earlier, he said he found it "perverse that you report an allegation of a pretty serious crime and they don't investigate [it] but they were investigating you."

Cummins' report was just one of a number of red flags raised with the DOJ between 2016 and 2020 about the Biden family influence-peddling scheme.

The FBI has had Hunter's abandoned laptop in its possession since December 2019, and Hunter's former business partner Tony Bobulinski handed over the contents of his three devices and provided evidence of then-candidate Biden's involvement in his son's overseas business deals during a five-hour interview with the FBI days before the 2020 election.