Fans were stunned when Homeland Security Investigations confirmed their agents were present at the Arkansas home owned by Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar last week. Here’s everything we know about what really happened.
HSI confirmed that the couple’s Tontitown home was visited by agents “pursuant to an ongoing federal criminal investigation.”
A spokesperson for the agency said, “[I do not dispute the information that] HSI was present there [Duggar home] pursuant to an ongoing federal criminal investigation,” according to local NEWS station KNWA. But the agency refused to confirm what they were investigating.
Homeland Security has the “legal authority” to investigate a wide host of alleged criminal infractions. According to their website, those crimes have to involve cross-border activity, and can include things like financial crimes, money laundering, bulk cash smuggling, commercial fraud and intellectual property theft, cyber crimes, human rights violations, and benefit fraud.
Jim Bob, 54, and Michelle, 53, denied the visit occurred in a post on their Instagram page.
“We were shocked to see a news report today state that our home was raided by federal law enforcement agencies,” they wrote in a statement. “This is not true.”
“To the best of our knowledge, it’s also not true that any member of our family is the target of any investigation of any kind. Living a life in the public’s eye has taught us that it is best not to reply to every rumor and piece of ‘fake news’ that is circulated online. It would be a full-time job if we attempted to do so,” it continued.
“However, because of tonight’s media coverage we thought it is important to address this rumor with you. Thank you for the love and support that we can always count on in you our fans and friends,” they said.
Their son Jedidiah Duggar, 20, is running for state representative in Arkansas. He denied knowing about the raid, telling KNWA, “I don’t live there and I am not aware of any investigation.”
Rumors of a law enforcement raid began to circulate online on Monday, November 18. That day, RadarOnline.com spoke to an FBI agent about the rumors. According to the agent, the Arkansas FBI has heard about the allegations of a raid, but said they had not gone to any Duggar family member’s home or business over the weekend
The family is no stranger to legal issues. As Star
readers know, the family lost their TLC show, 19 Kids And Counting
after In Touch magazine
published a police report in 2015 that revealed eldest son Josh Duggar
had been accused of molesting some of his younger sisters and a family friend.
Josh was dragged into a real estate lawsuit earlier this year. According to Radar
, he’s accused of illegally purchasing property that belonged to someone else.