FACT CHECK: No, Tom Hanks Was Not Arrested For Pedophilia In Australia

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A viral Facebook post claims actor Tom Hanks was arrested in Australia for pedophilia.

Verdict: False

There is no evidence Hanks was arrested on such a charge in Australia.

Fact Check:

The internet is replete with unfounded rumors about celebrities engaging in pedophilia and child sex trafficking. Ellen DeGeneres, Oprah Winfrey, Jimmy Kimmel and Piers Morgan have all been baselessly accused of such crimes, and a July 13 Facebook post adds Hanks to that supposed list, claiming he was arrested for pedophilia in Australia.

The post features four pictures of the actor, including two close-up shots of his feet with red circles drawn around his ankles. “Look who has a new ankle bracelet!” reads text accompanying the image. “Some of you don’t know it but Mr. Hanks was arrested in Australia for pedophilia.”

The post further claims that Hanks’s statement in March announcing that he and his wife had tested positive for COVID-19 while filming a movie in Australia was a cover for the fact that he was actually under house arrest.

However, there is no truth to these claims. The Daily Caller News Foundation found no evidence to suggest Hanks was arrested or charged with any child sex crime. Celebrities often make headlines when they have run-ins with the law. Had Hanks been on house arrest, it would certainly be covered in the media, yet no reporting about it exists.

There is also no evidence that Hanks is still in Australia, further adding to the post’s dubiousness. Multiple news reports state that Hanks and his wife returned to the U.S. at the end of March after self-quarantining in Australia.

In the U.S., convicted sex offenders must register with the Department of Justice upon their release from prison, but there is no record of Hanks on the Department of Justice’s national sex offender registry. Nor does he appear on California’s sex offender registry. (RELATED: Does This Photo Show Tom Hanks Quarantined In Australia With Wilson The Volleyball?)

The Daily Mail published the photos being shared with captions that say they show Hanks walking around Los Angeles in May. There is no mention of an ankle monitor by the Daily Mail, and it does not appear from the pictures that Hanks is wearing one. Rather, it seems the bottom of his pants gathered around his ankles.

“Despite having already beaten COVID-19, Tom Hanks wasn’t willing to take any chances on Wednesday, with the Forrest Gump star covering his face with a green bandana when he ventured out in Los Angeles,” reads the Daily Mail caption of the image showing Hanks standing outside an open car door.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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