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Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs’ homes have been raided by US law enforcement. Here’s what we know

Homes belonging to Sean “Diddy” Combs in Los Angeles and Miami were raided by officials from US Homeland Security on Monday, 25 March.

The rapper and music mogul – who is credited with helping launch the careers of artists including Biggie Smalls, Mary J Blige and Usher – has faced a string of varying accusations in the past six months, including sexual assault.

Here’s everything you need to know:

Why are the homes being raided?

Combs’ Los Angeles mansion is in the upmarket Holmby Hills area, near Bel Air and Beverly Hills, while his Miami Beach home is located on the exclusive Star Island.

The raids are “in connection with a federal sex trafficking investigation” according to Fox 11, who were first to report on the raids.

In a statement issued on Monday, Homeland Security said: “Earlier today, Homeland Security Investigations New York executed law enforcement actions as part of an ongoing investigation with assistance from HSI Los Angeles, HSI Miami and our local law enforcement partners.

“We will provide further information as it becomes available.”

<p>Law enforcement officials outside a home owned by Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs in Los Angeles </p>
Law enforcement officials outside a home owned by Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs in Los Angeles (AP)

NBC News cited an unnamed source as saying that three women and a man have been interviewed by federal officials in Manhattan and three other interviews are scheduled concerning allegations of sex trafficking, sexual assault, and the solicitation and distribution of illegal narcotics and firearms.

It remains unconfirmed whether Combs himself is the focus of the investigation,

Fox 11 has also shared video footage of the raid taken from an overhead helicopter that shows several individuals in handcuffs outside the property, including two men.

What are the accusations against Combs?

The rapper and music mogul, 54, has faced a string of sexual assault allegations in recent months.

In February, a male music producer accused Combs of sexually assaulting him and forcing him to sleep with sex workers.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in New York, accused the music mogul of repeated instances of unsolicited groping and sexual touching. It also said that the man had to work in a bathroom while Combs showered and walked around naked.

Another lawsuit, filed in December, alleged that Combs had gang-raped a 17-year-old girl in 2003.

The plaintiff, identified as Jane Doe, accused Combs of plying her with drugs and alcohol at his New York studio and then raping her along with two associates.

The suit accused Combs of a “sex trafficking scheme,” in which Jane Doe was flown by private jet from her home in Michigan to New York.

Combs has vehemently denied all accusations against him.

Lawsuit with Cassie

In November, he and R&B singer Cassie, whose full name is Cassandra Ventura, settled a lawsuit after she claimed that she was trafficked, raped and beaten by the rapper on many occasions over 10 years.

<p>Cassie (left) and Sean “Diddy” Combs at the 2017 Met Gala</p>
Cassie (left) and Sean “Diddy” Combs at the 2017 Met Gala (Getty Images)

Her lawsuit alleged that Combs brought the singer into his “ostentatious, fast-paced, and drug-fueled lifestyle” not long after she met him, and signed her to his label when she was 19 and he was 37 in 2005.

Cassie said that the pattern of abuse began as soon as their relationship started and that, as she was trying to end it in 2018, he forced her into her Los Angeles home and raped her.

Her accusations against Combs were brought through the New York Adult Survivors Act (ASA), which expired at midnight on 23 November 2023

The act provided survivors a one-year window to pursue civil litigation regardless of when the abuse occurred, meaning incidents from decades were finally brought to light.

Over 2,500 cases were filed under the ASA before its expiry at midnight on 23 November 2023, court data sent to The Independent showed.

Survivors brought lawsuits against some of the state’s most powerful men, including major players in entertainment, such as Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, Axl Rose, and Combs.

What has Combs said?

The mogul has strongly denied all the accusations against him and vowed to “fight for my name, my family and for the truth.”

In a statement in December, following the lawsuit brought by Jane Doe, he called the claims “sickening” and said his accusers were “looking for a quick payday”.

“Let me be absolutely clear: I did not do any of the awful things being alleged,” he said in a statement. “I will fight for my name, my family and for the truth.”

<p>Combs has vehemently denied all the accusations against him </p>
Combs has vehemently denied all the accusations against him (Getty Images for MTV)

Combs’s lawyer, Shawn Holley, branded the events described in the lawsuit as “pure fiction”.

“We have overwhelming, indisputable proof that his claims are complete lies,” he said. “We will address these outlandish allegations in court and take all appropriate action against those who make them.”

Following the settlement with Ventura, Ben Brafman, another attorney for Combs, told The Independent: “Just so we’re clear, a decision to settle a lawsuit, especially in 2023, is in no way an admission of wrongdoing.

“Mr. Combs’s decision to settle the lawsuit does not in any way undermine his flat-out denial of the claims.

“He is happy they got to a mutual settlement and wishes Ms Ventura the best.”

Source: The Independent