According to a report this weekend by Oscar Gonzalez at CNET, Sony senior vice president George Cacioppo has been terminated from his job after allegedly appearing in a YouTube video published by the amateur pedophilia sting group and YouTube channel People v. Preds. Members of the YouTube channel used the dating app Grindr to pose as a 15-year-old boy, set a date with Cacioppo, and then exposed him on camera.
In the video, which begins with a highlight reel of previous bust successes, a man using the name “Jeff” who appears to be Cacioppo is waiting on what he assumes is a 15-year-old boy; the man is wearing a PlayStation 5 logo shirt and retreats to his house after he realizes what’s happening. The cameraman yells on the doorstep about calling the police and announces to the neighborhood that the man in question invited a 15 year-old over in the middle of the night to have sex.
Grindr—a dating app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people—requires people to be 18 or older to use the app, but does not have stringent self-identification measures in place to prevent someone underage from using the app and being preyed-upon by pedophiles. The YouTube video also has a link to a temporary Google Drive folder with an archive of phone screenshots from Grindr. Cacioppo, who has served as Senior Vice President of Engineering for the PlayStation Network for the past eight years, appears to have posted photos of his face in the Grindr chat.
People v. Preds confirmed to CNET that the evidence was turned over to the San Diego County District Attorney’s Office. Legal trouble is currently rife across American bases of the Sony PlayStation as, further north in California, the company is currently facing a gender discrimination lawsuit.