Counter-Strike co-creator charged with commercial sexual abuse of a minor

by Keith Capstick Feb 6
Thumbnail image courtesy of PC Gamer

Jess Cliffe, 36, one of the co-creators of Counter-Strike, has been charged with commercial sexual abuse of a minor, according to documents provided to theScore esports by the King County prosecutor's office.

Cliffe was originally arrested on Feb. 1 but was not immediately charged with a crime. He then appeared in court on Feb. 2, where he posted bail for $150,000.

He was then formally charged at his second court date on Monday.

According to the documents, the victim was 16 years old at the time of the crime. They say that the victim encountered two men through an online website called, including one who police have identified as Cliffe.

Prior to the charge Valve corporation had suspended his employment until further details about the incident were revealed.

“We are still learning details of what actually happened. Reports suggest he has been arrested for a felony offense," said Doug Lombardi, a spokesperson for Valve. "As such we have suspended his employment until we know more.”

Cliffe created Counter-Strike, which was originally a mod for Half-Life, with Minh Le while in university in 1999. He is well-known as one of the voices of Counter-Strike because his voice was used for many of the in-game vocal commands and sound effects.

Cliffe was still working as a game designer for Valve Corporation prior to the incident. His next hearing is set for Feb. 25.

Keith Capstick is a news editor for theScore esports. You can follow him on Twitter.