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Sexual assault claim surfaces against former Rockstar exec

Investigated but dismissed by HR.

A former Rockstar employee has come forward and shared their story of how they were sexually assaulted by a member of the studio's top executive team.

The incident, which occurred back in 2014 but has come to light now after a thorough Kotaku investigation, involves Jeronimo Barrera, who was Rockstar's vice president of product development.

Barrera quietly left Rockstar after 20 years last December, but during his time at the company he was feared by staff as a volatile boss happy to dole out threats of firings - and actual firings - on a whim.

But this new allegation - which Barrera has denied, and refused to speak further on - is something else.

Designer Colin Bundschu was new to Rockstar when, he says, Barrera groped him in a nightclub during a work night out. Speaking to Kotaku, Bundschu said he was groped twice by Barrera. Bundschu then left, to Barrera's dismay. The incident was witnessed by colleagues and immediately reported to Rockstar's HR department.

But while Rockstar HR investigated the claim, it was eventually dismissed - despite apparent confusion over Barrera first appearing to suggest he did not remember the incident, then later refuting it happened outright. No other witnesses came forward.

"Given that your allegations could not be substantiated, the remedial action against Jeronimo that you appear to seek is not warranted," Bundschu was eventually told. He left the company and the video games industry shortly afterward.

Speaking to Kotaku, several Rockstar employees suggested they would not involve or trust the company's HR division to mediate serious issues, and would not want to "rock the boat" by drawing attention to themselves.

The full report is well worth a read.

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About the Author

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Tom Phillips

Deputy Editor

Tom is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He writes lots of news, some of the puns and makes sure we put the accent on Pokémon.

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