Counter-Strike co-creator Jess Cliffe pleads guilty to sexual exploitation of a minor

by Daniel Rosen Oct 11
Thumbnail image courtesy of PC Gamer

Trigger Warning: The following piece contains descriptions of sexual exploitation.

Counter-Strike co-creator Jess Cliffe, 37, has pleaded guilty to charges of sexually exploiting a minor, according to his court docket.

Cliffe first appeared in court on Feb. 2, and filed his guilty plea on Oct. 8. Cliffe was charged with soliciting sex from a minor through a website called Seeking Arrangement.

During the investigation, the victim, who was 16 at the time, told police that Cliffe paid her for sex multiple times, and videotaped their sexual interactions against her will.

Cliffe is best known in the esports and gaming communities for his work with Minh Le in creating the original Counter-Strike in 1999. Prior to his arrest and trial, Cliffe worked at CS:GO developer and publisher Valve. He was suspended after his arrest, though his current employment status with the company is unclear.

Cliffe's sentencing hearing is set for Nov. 2.

Daniel Rosen is a news editor for theScore esports. You can follow him on Twitter.