A Sony senior vice president who worked on the PlayStation Network was fired from his position after being caught in an amateur pedophilia sting video. San Diego police confirmed Thursday he is now under investigation.
George Cacioppo was allegedly trying to arrange a meeting with a person claiming to be a 15-year-old boy, according to a video posted Dec. 3 by the YouTube channel People v. Preds. Cacioppo had been a senior vice president of engineering at Sony for the past eight years, according to his LinkedIn profile. He has been fired after allegedly appearing in the video.
"We are aware of the situation and the employee in question has been terminated from employment," Sony said in an emailed statement Sunday.
Cacioppo didn't respond to requests for comment submitted through his LinkedIn account.
In the video, a cameraman is seen walking down a street at night toward a house. A person who appears to be Cacioppo, wearing a PS5 shirt, is standing outside the house. The cameraman then speaks to Cacioppo, referring to him as "Jeff." As the cameraman asks more questions, Cacioppo walks back into the house and closes the door while refusing to answer. The cameraman proceeds to start yelling that he will call the police.
According to a Google Drive link posted in the YouTube video's description, Cacioppo allegedly spoke with a person who said he was 15 years old on Grindr, the social networking app for gay, bi, trans and queer people. The two exchanged pictures and discussed sex acts, according to screenshots of the conversation. Cacioppo allegedly told the decoy that his name was "Jeff" and provided his address. The decoy said he would take an Uber to his location, and Cacioppo was allegedly waiting outside.
A spokesperson for the San Diego Police said Thursday its Internet Crimes Against Children task force is investigating the incident. People v. Preds confirmed that the information was sent to the San Diego County District Attorney's Office. The DA's office says it has yet to receive the case from law enforcement.
This isn't the first tech company employee that People v. Preds claims to have caught trying to meet a minor. In October, a man identified as Todd Wiseman allegedly set up a meeting with a 15-year-old on Grindr.
According to his LinkedIn profile, Wiseman was a senior account manager at Nvidia. A spokesman for the company said Wiseman doesn't work for the company but confirmed he used to be an employee. Nvidia declined to comment on whether the video contributed to the end of his employment.
Wiseman didn't respond to a request for comment submitted through his LinkedIn account.