Last week, it was reported that Counter-Strike co-creator Jess Cliffe had been arrested in Seattle over the alleged sexual exploitation of a child. Now, details of the accusations have emerged: Cliffe has been formally charged with the crime of commercial sexual abuse of a minor.
Police records made public on Monday allege that Cliffe paid a 16-year-old girl $300 an hour for three separate hour-long sessions. The girl, who has not been identified, said she used the website SeekingArrangement.com to "meet with men who offered to pay her money to have sex with her."
The teenager has accused Cliffe of filming their last sexual encounter without her consent. She said he wanted to test out the camera on his new iPhone. She refused but noticed he was recording them anyway. Later, she asked him not to post the video, to which he agreed.
The girl told detectives that she considered accusing Cliffe of making child pornography, but "decided against it as to not upset him in addition to the fact that he could not be certain that he was aware of her true age of 16 years.” Police say that Cliffe told investigators he believed the girl was 23.
After serving warrants to AT&T, Verizon, and SeekingArrangement.com, police went to Cliffe’s home to let him know he was "named in an assault investigation."
"Mr. Cliffe is surprised by the allegations and charges," Cliffe's attorney said Monday. "He has fully cooperated with the police investigation, providing any and all information that has been requested of him."
Cliffe remains suspended from Valve, where he has worked since 2003. His next hearing will take place on February 25, and he has posted $150,000 bail.