Diddy News Update as More Celebrities Speak Out

After Sean “Diddy” Combs’ properties were raided by federal authorities earlier this week amid sex-trafficking allegations, old interviews of Usher speaking about the “very curious things” he saw while living at the rap mogul’s New York mansion have resurfaced.

The prosecutor who secured the sex trafficking conviction of disgraced R&B star R. Kelly has also weighed in, saying Combs should be “very concerned” about the raids that took place.

Investigators with the Department of Homeland Security executed search warrants at properties belonging to Combs in Miami and the Holmby Hills suburb of Los Angeles on Monday afternoon.

The searches are thought to be connected to a federal sex trafficking investigation based out of New York. In recent months, Combs has faced several lawsuits accusing him of sexual assault and trafficking, allegations which he has denied.

Sean "Diddy" Combs
Rapper Sean “Diddy” Combs attends the REVOLT & AT&T Summit on October 25, 2019, in Los Angeles, California. After Combs’ properties were raided on Monday, old interviews of Usher speaking about Combs have resurfaced.

Scott Dudelson/Getty Images

As news of the raid became a talking point on social media, several celebrities shared their thoughts on the matter. The internet also did what it did best, with people resurfacing old interviews of celebrities talking about Combs.

One interview that is doing the rounds is Usher’s 2016 appearance on The Howard Stern Show. In it, he discussed what it was like living with Combs—who throughout his career has also been known as Puff Daddy, Puffy, and Brother Love—for a year when he was 13 years old, shedding light on a world of hedonism and shady sexual practices.

Newsweek emailed a spokesperson for Usher for comment Thursday.

Combs, who’s known for having fostered promising young artists such as Usher, was instrumental in molding the singer’s formative years.

Usher lived in the music tycoon’s New York apartment for a year after signing a record deal with LA Reid, where he was mentored by the music mogul—an experience known as “Flavor Camp.” Usher told Stern that during this time, there were “very curious things taking place.”

“I got a chance to see some things. I went there to see the lifestyle—and I saw it,” the “Burn” hitmaker said. “I don’t know if I could indulge and understand what I was even looking at. It was pretty wild.”

Usher told Stern that during his time living there, he was often up late partying. When asked if he would ever send his children to “Puffy camp,” Usher responded: “Hell, no.”

In a 2004 interview with Rolling Stone, Usher said Combs introduced him to “a totally different set of s***—sex, specifically.”

He added: “Sex is so hot in the industry, man. There was always girls around. You’d open a door and see somebody doing it, or several people in a room having an orgy. You never knew what was going to happen.”

Usher and Sean "Diddy" Combs
Usher (L) and Sean Combs on The Hollywood Walk of Fame on October 10, 2013, in Hollywood, California. Combs is known for having fostered promising young artists such as Usher.

Michael Tran/FilmMagic

During a conversation with NewsNation’s Ashleigh Banfield, Nadia Shihata, the prosecutor who secured R. Kelly’s sex trafficking conviction, said the raids at Combs’ properties are a sign an investigation is “well underway.”

“Obviously, taking an overt step and investigation of searching two homes means the investigation is well underway here,” she said.

“They’ve clearly had probable cause to believe a federal crime has been committed and that evidence of that crime or multiple crimes would be found in the two locations that they searched. So, this is this is big news. And if I’m P Diddy or his lawyers, I’d be very concerned at this point.”

In 2022, Shihata played a key role in putting R Kelly in jail for 30 years for eight counts of sex trafficking. Banfield also informed viewers that federal investigators are using Shihata’s prosecution of R Kelly as a blueprint for their case against Combs.

Newsweek emailed Shihata for further comment and contacted Combs’ attorney for comment on this story on Friday.

Previously, rapper 50 Cent shared his thoughts on the raids, mocking Combs on social media. The pair have been feuding since 2007, after 50 Cent suggested, without proof, that Combs was involved in the killing of hip-hop legend The Notorious BIG.

“Now it’s not Diddy do it, it’s Diddy done,” 50 Cent wrote on X, formerly Twitter. “They don’t come like that unless they got a case.”

The “In Da Club” hitmaker, whose real name is Curtis Jackson III, illustrated his post with screenshots of the news coverage of the Los Angeles raid.

Homeland Security Investigations said in a statement that it had “executed law enforcement actions as part of an ongoing investigation, with assistance from HSI Los Angeles, HSI Miami, and our local law enforcement partners.”

In response to the raids and subsequent media coverage, Combs’ attorney, Aaron Dyer, told Newsweek in an email on Tuesday: “There is no excuse for the excessive show of force and hostility exhibited by authorities or the way his children and employees were treated. Mr. Combs was never detained but spoke to and cooperated with authorities.

“This unprecedented ambush—paired with an advanced, coordinated media presence— leads to a premature rush to judgment of Mr. Combs and is nothing more than a witch hunt based on meritless accusations made in civil lawsuits,” Dyer added.

“There has been no finding of criminal or civil liability with any of these allegations. Mr. Combs is innocent and will continue to fight every single day to clear his name.”

Allegations Against Combs

In recent months, music producer Combs has faced several legal battles, with lawsuits accusing him of sexual assault and trafficking.

In February, music producer Rodney “Lil Rod” Jones filed a lawsuit accusing Combs of coercing him to solicit prostitutes and then pressuring him to have sex with them. Jones, who produced several tracks on Combs’ The Love Album: Off the Grid, alleges that he was sexually harassed, drugged and threatened by Combs for more than a year, and is seeking $30 million in damages.

Combs’ attorney Shawn Holley has disputed the allegations, previously telling Newsweek that “we have overwhelming, indisputable proof that his claims are complete lies.”

In 2023, three lawsuits alleging sexual assault were filed against the rapper under the New York Adult Survivors Act, which expired at midnight on November 23.

A woman named Joi Dickerson-Neal filed a lawsuit in November accusing Combs of drugging and sexually assaulting her. The suit alleged that Combs filmed the incident and showed the footage to others in an act described as “revenge porn.” The complaint came days after Combs settled a suit with Cassie Ventura, who accused him of raping, sex trafficking and physically abusing her for nearly a decade.

In December, Combs was hit with another lawsuit over allegations that he trafficked and sexually abused a woman identified as Jane Doe. The suit accuses the rapper of gang rape and sex trafficking.

Combs’ lawyer previously denied these claims in a statement shared with Newsweek, which read: “These are fabricated claims falsely alleging misconduct from over 30 years ago and filed at the last minute. This is nothing but a money grab.

“Because of Mr. Combs’ fame and success, he is an easy target for anonymous accusers who lie without conscience or consequence for financial benefit. The New York Legislature surely did not intend or expect the Adult Survivors Act to be exploited by scammers. The public should be skeptical and not rush to accept these bogus allegations.”

Following Monday’s raids, attorney Douglas Wigdor, who represents Ventura and the anonymous plaintiff, issued this statement: “We will always support law enforcement when it seeks to prosecute those that have violated the law. Hopefully, this is the beginning of a process that will hold Mr. Combs responsible for his depraved conduct.”