- Joerg Arnu founded a website dedicated to publishing information on Area 51.
- On November 3, FBI and US Air Force agents raided his home, Arnu claimed.
- An Air Force spokesman confirmed to Insider that a joint investigation is being conducted.
US Air Force and FBI agents raided the home of the man who runs a website dedicated to publishing information on Area 51, a highly classified government facility that is often the focus of alien conspiracy theories.
Joerg Arnu, the founder and webmaster of the website, claimed in a statement that a search warrant was executed and his “laptops, phones, backup drives, camera gear and my drone were seized” in the early morning of November 3.
“Nellis Air Force Base is aware of the joint-AFOSI (Department of the Air Force Office of Special Investigations), FBI investigation involving Mr. Arnu,” Lt. Col. Bryon McGarry said in an emailed statement to Insider.
The Las Vegas Review-Journal first reported and confirmed the news of the raid.
The website, dreamlandresort.com, was founded in 1999 and hosts a wide range of information regarding the top secret military base. “Secrets of Area 51 revealed,” the site’s banner advertises.
It includes directions to the area, panoramic photos of the facility, information on projects conducted at the site, and links to radio frequencies used around the location.
Arnu said in a statement published on his website that his home in Rachel, a town just outside Area 51, was searched by “15-20 agents in full riot gear.”
“The doors were broken open and I in Rachel and my girlfriend in our Las Vegas home were detained and treated in the most disrespectful way,” he wrote. “My girlfriend was led out into the street barefoot and only in her underwear in full view of our neighbors; I was led outside, handcuffed and only in t-shirt and sweats in sub-freezing temperatures.”
Arnu further stated that he was only told that the search was regarding images on his website.
He said he attempted to “defuse” the situation by removing some of the material published on his website despite believing “that it was legally obtained and legal to publish.”
“I am not sharing anything on my web site that cannot be found on dozens of other web sites and news outlet publications,” he wrote. “Considering how this went down I have no intention of removing any more material unless ordered to do so by a federal judge.”
Arnu said that he intends to seek “legal action” to retrieve his equipment and seek reimbursement.
A representative for the website did not immediately return a request for comment.