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Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs’ lawyer says searches of rapper’s home constituted ‘excessive’ use of ‘military force’

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LOS ANGELES-

Sean “Diddy” Combs’ lawyer said Tuesday that searches of the rapper’s properties in Los Angeles and Miami by federal authorities in a sex trafficking investigation were “a crude use of force at the military level” and that Combs is “innocent and will continue to fight” to clear his name.

It’s the first public statement from the music mogul’s team since Monday’s searches of his home by Homeland Security Investigations agents.

“Yesterday, there was an excessive use of military force when search warrants were executed at Mr. Combs’ residences,” attorney Aaron Dyer said in a statement. “There is no excuse for the excessive show of force and hostility shown by the authorities or the way his children and employees were treated.

The searches were part of an ongoing sex trafficking investigation by federal authorities in New York, two law enforcement officials told The Associated Press. The officials were not authorized to publicly discuss details of the investigation and spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity.

Combs was not arrested or spoke to authorities, and neither he nor any member of his family were arrested and their movements were not restricted, according to Dyer’s statement.

Dyers said the “unprecedented ambush” led to “a premature rush to judgment for Mr. Combs and is nothing more than a witch hunt based on baseless accusations made in lawsuits.” civil”.

“None of these allegations has resulted in a finding of criminal or civil liability,” Dyers said. “Mr. Combs is innocent and will continue to fight every day to clear his name.”

Combs’ sons, Justin and Christian “King” Combs, were handcuffed during the raid at their father’s Los Angeles residence. King, 25, is a musical artist whose song “Can’t Stop Won’t Stop” featuring Kodak Black topped Billboard’s Mainstream R&B Hip-Hop charts in 2022.

Law enforcement conducted the raid Monday at Combs’ multimillion-dollar mansion in the affluent Holmby Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles and at his waterfront home in Miami. Along with a heavy officer presence, command trucks were parked outside both properties.

The criminal investigation marks a major escalation in scrutiny of Combs, who has been accused in several sexual abuse lawsuits in recent months.

In a lawsuit, Combs settled the next day filed in November, his former protégé and girlfriend, R&B singer Cassie, sued him, alleging years of sexual abuse, including rape. The lawsuit says he forced her to have sex with prostitutes while he filmed them.

In February, a music producer filed a complaint alleging that Combs coerced him into soliciting prostitutes and pressured him to have sex with them.

Another of Combs’ accusers was a woman who said the rap producer raped her twenty years ago, when she was 17.

Combs and his attorneys have denied all allegations in the lawsuits.

The AP generally does not name people who say they were sexually abused, unless they come forward publicly as Cassie did.

Combs is one of the most influential hip-hop producers and executives of the last three decades. Formerly known as Puff Daddy, he built one of hip-hop’s largest empires, paving the way for several entities attached to his famous name. He is the founder of Bad Boy Records and a three-time Grammy winner who has worked with many top artists, including Notorious BIG, Mary J. Blige, Usher, Lil Kim, Faith Evans and 112.

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