The FBI raided the California mansion of YouTube personality Jake Paul on Wednesday morning, the same day that Scottsdale police dropped charges against him stemming from a protest that evolved into break-ins and looting at the Fashion Square Mall in May.
A federal search warrant was executed "in connection to an ongoing investigation," confirmed Rukelt Dalberis, an FBI Public Affairs officer.
Dalberis said the affidavit was sealed, and he was prohibited from commenting on the nature of the investigation.
Video footage of the FBI raid from KABC in Los Angeles showed county sheriff’s deputies carrying firearms from Paul's house.
Paul, 23, is a controversial YouTube figure, who faced charges for his role in the looting of Scottsdale Fashion Square on May 30 after a protest was held in response to the killing of George Floyd.
About 500 people converged on the mall May 30 for what started out as a peaceful protest against police brutality across the country but ended with smashed mall windows, graffiti-tagged walls and people looting merchandise.
Scottsdale police said at the time that Paul was among those who entered the mall, which had closed early, after crowds broke through an entrance. He was later charged with criminal trespass and unlawful assembly, both misdemeanor counts.
UPDATE: Authorities have seized multiple firearms from the Calabasas home of YouTube Star Jake Paul after the FBI served a search warrant early this morning https://t.co/oOkiwY7kSz pic.twitter.com/NDLFGakPmY
— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) August 5, 2020
Paul's attorney Richard Schonfeld confirmed for The Associated Press that the home raided Wednesday belonged to his client.
“We understand that a search warrant was executed at Jake’s Calabasas home this morning while Jake was out-of-state,” Schonfeld said in an email. “We are still gathering information and will cooperate with the investigation.”
Also Wednesday, Scottsdale Police Department announced misdemeanor charges were dismissed without prejudice for Paul related to his involvement at Scottsdale Fashion Square.
A statement from the department said the decision to dismiss the charges "is in the best interest of the community ... so that a federal criminal investigation can be completed."
The department added that Scottsdale still has the option to refile those charges depending on the outcome of the federal investigation.
Paul was also under recent criticism for a massive house party he threw at his mansion in Calabasas amidst a pandemic on July 14, in which there was no social distancing or mask-wearing, according to the Los Angeles Times.
According to a statement from the Orange County district attorney’s office to the Associated Press, more YouTube stars are dealing with legal matters.
Authorities said Wednesday that twin brothers Alan and Alex Stokes, 23, of Irvine, California were charged for faking bank robberies in Southern California.
More specifically, they were charged with false imprisonment effected by violence, menace, fraud or deceit. They also were charged with a misdemeanor count of falsely reporting an emergency.
The twins, wearing black clothing and ski masks and carrying duffle bags full of cash, shot a video last October in which they pretended to have robbed a bank, prosecutors said.
“They ordered an Uber and when they got in the vehicle the Uber driver, who was unaware of the prank, refused to drive them,” according to the press statement. “A bystander witnessed this, believing the two men had just robbed a bank and were attempting to carjack the Uber driver.”
Arriving Irvine police held the driver at gunpoint until it was determined he wasn’t involved and the incident was a hoax. The brothers were warned but not arrested and they staged a similar scenario four hours later at the University of California, Irvine, prosecutors said.
“These were not pranks,” county District Attorney Todd Spitzer said in the statement. “These are crimes that could have resulted in someone getting seriously injured or even killed.”
He called the videos “some kind of twisted attempt to gain more popularity on the internet by unnecessarily putting members of the public and police officers in danger.”
If convicted, the twins, who have nearly 5 million YouTube followers, could face up to four years each in prison.
Contributing: Lorraine Longhi and The Associated Press
Reach the reporter at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @alana_minkler.
This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: YouTuber Jake Paul's house raided by FBI in ongoing investigation