December 8, 2015

Operation Backfire: Ten Years Later, Two Fugitives Remain

August 10, 2018 Update: After 12 years on the run, Joseph Dibee has been apprehended. More information

Ten years ago this month, the FBI initiated Operation Backfire—the takedown of the most prolific domestic terrorism cell of the time. The group, known as The Family, was tied to more than 40 criminal acts ranging from vandalism to arson between 1995 and 2001, causing more than $45 million in damages. The cell’s 1998 arson attack on a ski resort in Vail, Colorado was its most notorious crime: estimated damage for this one event was $26 million.

In all, 17 individuals were indicted for their involvement with The Family, but a decade later, two remain fugitives: Josephine Sunshine Overaker and Joseph Dibee. The FBI has just released an age-progressed photograph of Overaker. If you have information on the whereabouts of either of these fugitives, please contact your local FBI office, nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate, or submit at tip at