FACT CHECK: Has Anthony Fauci Been Arrested By Navy SEALs?
A viral Instagram post claims Dr. Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), was arrested June 1 by Navy SEALs.
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There is no evidence Fauci was arrested by Navy SEALs. The claim appears to originate from a website that has previously published misinformation.
The Instagram post includes an image that appears to show Fauci being led away by armed men, along with text that reads, “Fauci in Custody!” The block of text goes on to allege that Fauci was “arrested on June 1st at his home in Washington D.C. by Navy Seals, operating on the direct orders of President Donald Trump.”
However, the post’s claim doesn’t hold up under scrutiny. Fauci has made multiple public appearances since the date he was allegedly arrested. For instance, he participated in a June 3 White House press briefing. On June 23, he appeared on “CBS This Morning” and NBC’s “Today.”
There is no mention of his supposed arrest on the Department of Justice’s website or the Department of Defense’s website. Such an incident would prompt coverage from national news organizations, yet there is none.
Further adding to the Instagram post’s dubiousness, former President Donald Trump lost his authority over the U.S. military when President Joe Biden was sworn in Jan. 20 and, as prescribed in the Constitution, became the commander-in-chief.
“Completely false,” a Department of Defense spokesperson said in an email to Check Your Fact when asked about the post’s claim. (RELATED: Did Dr Anthony Fauci Say All Americans Should Be Microchipped?)
Through a reverse image search, Check Your Fact found a similar image of Fauci being led away by armed men in a July 2020 satire article, titled “Trump Administration Plants 137,000 Corpses In Fauci’s Bed To Frame Him For Coronavirus Deaths,” that was published by The Onion. In the image that appears in the Instagram post, a photo of a Guantanamo Bay detention center seems to have been added to the background.
Dark Outpost, the website cited in the Instagram post as the source of the claim, has published false information in the past, according to Reuters. The website made the inaccurate claim about Fauci being arrested in a video included in a June 22 post.