YouTuber Jake Paul’s Calabasas mansion was searched by FBI on Wednesday morning local time, with aerial footage showing agents seizing firearms from the property.
The FBI had been granted a search warrant in connection with an ongoing investigation, said FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller via The Guardian. Footage show agents gathering rifles, carrying them two at a time.
TMZ is reporting the raid looked like a “mini military parade” and involved “armoured trucks”. “By our count, there seems to have been at least 20 people or so on the ground executing the search warrant – which makes ya wonder what the hell Jake might be mixed up in, if anything at all,” the publication reports.
Jake’s attorney Richard Schonfeld issued a statement to TMZ, saying: “We understand that a search warrant was executed at Jake‘s Calabasas home this morning while Jake was out-of-state. We are still gathering information and will cooperate with the investigation.”
Details of the search warrant have been sealed so it’s unclear the exact reason behind the raid. However, an FBI spokesperson confirmed to BuzzFeed News the search was connected with Jake's arrest at a shopping centre in Scottsdale, Arizona during a George Floyd protest back in May.
"The FBI is investigating allegations of criminal acts surrounding the incident at Scottsdale Fashion Square in May 2020," the spokesperson said in a statement. "This morning the FBI executed federal search warrants in California and Las Vegas, Nevada in connection with this investigation."
At the time of his arrest, Jake had said: “To be clear, neither I nor nor anyone in our group was engaged in any looting or vandalism. For context, we spent the day doing our part to peacefully protest one of the most horrific injustices our country has ever seen, which led to us being tear-gassed for filming the events and brutality that were unfolding in Arizona.”
In July, the 23-year-old, who has more than 20 million followers on his YouTube channel, was slammed by the mayor of Calabasas for holding a massive party amid the coronavirus pandemic. Neighbours had said none of his guests observed social distancing, nor were they wearing masks.
Clearly this latest controversy is just one of many for Jake Paul, but it is a significant one to overcome. He now joins the ranks of YouTubers also attempting to avoid full-on cancellation this year, including his friend and collaborator, Shane Dawson.
No doubt we’ll be hearing updates from the FBI and Jake's camp soon.
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