John Griffin, a veteran CNN producer who worked “shoulder to shoulder” with ex-anchor Chris Cuomo has been indicted on charges of luring young girls to his Vermont ski house for “sexual subservience” training.
Griffin, 44, who has been a producer with CNN for about eight years, was arrested on Friday December 10 and charged with three counts of using a facility of interstate commerce to attempt to entice minors to engage in unlawful sexual activity, the United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Vermont said in a news release.
The charges stem from conversations between Griffin and the purported parents of minor daughters, in which he allegedly tried to persuade them to “allow him to train their daughters to be sexually submissive,” as well as an incident in which prosecutors allege unlawful sexual activity occurred with a 9-year-old girl.
It was also alleged that the CNN producer paid for and kept an online profile on a “BDSM dating, Fetish, and Kink Site” for several years leading up to July 2020, on which he allegedly wrote he was looking for women who were “sexually ‘submissive’ and ‘open-minded.'”
During conversations on separate online platforms, Griffin allegedly said he believed in “a way of life” in which “women are sexually subservient and inferior to men,” according to the indictment. He allegedly used online platforms to seek parents “who would allow him to train their minor daughters to be sexually subservient,” the indictment said.
Around February 2020, Griffin acquired a Vermont ski house in which he offered to host mothers and their minor daughters for “sexual training” purposes, according to the indictment.
Griffin attempted to entice two other children over the internet into sexual activity, according to the indictment, which said he favored apps like Kik and Google Hangout for the alleged misdeeds. In April 2020, Griffin allegedly suggested a “virtual training session” over a video chat, that would include him instructing a mother and her 14-year-old daughter to remove their clothing and touch each other.
In June 2020, Griffin told another mom of a 16-year-old girl to take a little mother-daughter trip” to his Ludlow ski house for sexual training involving the child, according to the indictment.
In same June and July, Griffin also allegedly talked online and on the phone with someone who claimed to be the mother of two girls, 9 and 13, according to the indictment.
Griffin allegedly paid more than $3,000 to the woman to fly her and the 9-year-old girl to Boston in July, where prosecutors say he picked them up from the airport and brought them to the ski house “where the child was directed to engage in and did engage in illegal sexual activity,” the indictment said.
On his LinkedIn profile, Griffin boasts of having worked “shoulder-to-shoulder with lead anchor Chris Cuomo, seeing him through each show and producing live breaking news across the country and around the world.”
The worked together during Cuomo’s five years as co-anchor of CNN’s “A New Day.” Griffin, who calls himself a “father” on his Twitter feed and appears to have three young children, worked at CNN for almost nine years. Prior to that he held producing positions at ABC News, Fox News and CBS.
He also described himself as an “entrepreneurial producer who combines uncommon technical skills with exceptional, experience-honed editorial judgment, always with an eye towards “How can we do it better,” How can we move forward,” “How can we add value for the audience?”
The government will seek to take the property used in the alleged crimes, including Griffin’s Ludlow ski house, his Tesla, and a Mercedes, according to the indictment.