CNN Producer Charged with Attempting to Entice Minors for Sexual Activity: 'Deeply Disturbing,' Says Network

Veteran CNN producer John Griffin is accused of using communication platforms to convince the mothers of young daughters to allow the girls to be sexually submissive to him

Chris Cuomo’s CNN producer John Griffin
Photo: JGriffNYC/Twitter

Veteran CNN producer John Griffin has been criminally charged with enticing minors to engage in unlawful sexual activity.

The charges against the 44-year-old Stamford, Connecticut, resident were announced Friday by the Vermont Department of Justice.

Griffin was taken into custody by agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation after being charged with three counts of using a facility of interstate commerce to attempt to entice minors to engage in unlawful sexual activity.

He was indicted by a federal grand jury in Vermont Friday and arraigned in a New Haven, Connecticut, federal courthouse the same day.

According to the DOJ, Griffin used messaging applications Kik and Google Hangouts to speak with the parents of minor daughters. Authorities allege his overall goal on the communication platforms was to try to convince the mothers to allow him to train their daughters to be sexually submissive.

Griffin conveyed thoughts including one that a "woman is a woman regardless of her age," and that women should be sexually subservient and inferior to men, according to the DOJ.

On one occasion cited in the indictment in June of 2020, Griffin allegedly advised the mother of 9-year-old and 13-year-old girls to make sure the older child was "trained properly."

The mother was given $3,000 for plane tickets so she and the 9-year-old could leave Nevada and travel to Boston's Logan airport, said the DOJ.

Eventually, in July of 2020 the mother and daughter allegedly flew out to Boston where Griffin picked both up in his Tesla. The two were given a ride to his Ludlow, Massachusetts, house where he engaged the daughter in unlawful sexual activity, according to the indictment.

Griffin also stands accused of attempting to entice two other children online to engage in sexual activity.

The indictment states that one of the instances took place in April of 2020, when he tried to push a mother and daughter to engage in a "virtual training session" via video. It allegedly involved him trying to guide the mother and her 14-year-old daughter to strip and touch one another.

In the second incident, Griffin allegedly suggested to a woman appearing to be the mother of a 16-year-old girl that the two take a "little mother-daughter trip" to his Ludlow home for the sole purpose of sexual training.

According to the New York Post, each count carries a minimum of 10 years in prison.

The news outlet added that the federal government also has plans to confiscate Griffin's Ludlow home, Mercedes-Benz, and Tesla, which were allegedly used in the crimes.

"The charges against Mr. Griffin are deeply disturbing. We only learned of his arrest yesterday afternoon and have suspended him pending investigation," CNN said in a statement to PEOPLE on Saturday.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Griffin claims to have worked "shoulder-to-shoulder" with Chris Cuomo since April 2013 "seeing him through each show and producing live breaking news across the country and around the world" on New Day. Prior to CNN, Griffin also worked for ABC, CBS, and Fox News.

Cuomo was recently fired by the network over having allegedly provided advice and public relations assistance in connection with his brother and former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's sexual harassment scandal.

Chris was initially suspended by CNN pending the network's investigation into accusations of sexual misconduct by a former colleague, which he has denied. He has not been criminally charged in connection with those allegations.

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