FBI agents were seen at label DEL Records’ headquarters in Bell Gardens, Calif. during the early hours of Friday (May 22) where a federal search warrant was executed, Billboard can confirm.
“The FBI executed multiple search warrants today, one of the locations was DEL Records,” said FBI media coordinator/spokeswoman Laura Eimiller. A search warrant is typically conducted early on in an ongoing investigation based on allegations of criminal activity, according to Eimiller. It’s worth noting that no arrest warrants have been issued at this time.
On the search warrant, DEL Records issued the following statement: “We are able to confirm that the Federal Bureau of Investigation came to the offices of Del Records today and took a number of materials that we understand relate to the FBI’s investigation of our former artist, Gerardo Ortiz. To the best of our knowledge, Del Records is not a subject, but merely a source of information for the FBI’s investigation into Mr. Ortiz. We have cooperated fully with the FBI and will continue to do so.”
In response, Ortiz’s team issued their own statement which reads: “Today we learned the offices of Del Records and Del Entertainment Inc. were searched by the FBI, as well as the home of its owner, Jose Angel Del Villar, pursuant to a federally issued search warrant. Gerardo Ortiz currently has a lawsuit pending before the Los Angeles Superior Court and the California Labor Commissioner against the Del companies for alleged fraudulent conduct, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of contract and violation of the Talent Agencies Act for swindling Mr. Ortiz out of many tens of millions of dollars. To our knowledge the search by the FBI at Del Records office and Mr. Del Villar’s home does not involve Mr. Ortiz.”
At press time, the FBI would not confirm Ortiz’s involvement or any other details in the ongoing investigation saying that, “we’re not able to comment on the nature of the case or what we’re looking for because it’s all under seal by a federal judge.”