A lawsuit accuses the CEO behind the blockbuster ‘Borderlands’ video video games of lewd conduct and pocketing a secret $12 million bonus

Online game studio Gearbox Software program is engaged in contentious authorized battle with the corporate's former basic counsel, Wade Callender. Gearbox initially filed a lawsuit towards Callender alleging that he misused firm funds for to pay for tuition, a house mortgage, and different private bills. In a countersuit, Callender leveled a number of severe allegations towards Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford, accusing Pitchford of taking a $12 million bonus that was supposed as an advance towards income of "Borderlands 2," its blockbuster online game.  Callender's go well with additionally alleges that Pitchford as soon as left a USB drive in a Dallas restaurant containing underage pornography — although Pitchford individually instructed a podcast interview that the mannequin featured within the video was "barely authorized."  In a press release issued to Kotaku, Gearbox stated the allegations have "no foundation in actuality or legislation," and the corporate plans to settle the matter in courtroom. A messy break up between a online game Gearbox and its former basic counsel has led to a authorized battle, leading to some severe allegations towards Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford.  Kotaku reviews that Wade Callender, former basic counsel for Gearbox Software program, has filed a lawsuit towards Pitchford over a number of allegations involving the online game studio, in addition to a co-owned joint actual property enterprise. Amongst different issues, Callender alleges that Pitchford secretly took a $12 million bonus from writer Take-Two Interactive that was supposed to fund growth of Gearbox's blockbuster recreation, "Borderlands 2."  Extra significantly, Callender's lawsuit additionally makes allegations of improper private conduct towards Pitchford, together with claims that Pitchford as soon as left a USB drive in a Dallas restaurant that contained confidential Gearbox paperwork, in addition to information belonging to enterprise companions together with Sega, Sony, and Microsoft — and that "upon info and perception," Randy Pitchford’s USB drive additionally contained Randy Pitchford’s private assortment of ‘underage’ pornography," says the lawsuit.  The go well with additionally says that Pitchford hosted events the place “grownup males have reportedly uncovered themselves to minors, to the amusement of Randy Pitchford.” Gearbox shared the next assertion with Kotaku in response to the allegations: "The allegations made by a disgruntled former worker are absurd, with no foundation in actuality or legislation. We sit up for addressing this meritless lawsuit in courtroom and haven't any additional remark right now.” Afterward Friday, Gearbox additionally instructed Kotaku that it will pursue motion towards Callender immediately over his claims about Pitchford's private conduct: "Gearbox might be submitting a grievance with the State Bar of Texas towards our former basic counsel Wade for disciplinary proceedings for submitting a lawsuit that features accusations that he is aware of to be unfaithful," reads the assertion, partly.  Gearbox didn't instantly reply to a request for remark from Enterprise Insider. The background of the case Callender joined Gearbox in 2010 and served as basic counsel and vp of authorized affairs till August 2018. Callender and Pitchford had been long-time pals for over 40 years, however the friendship fell aside over the past two years, in keeping with Callender's lawsuit. An outdated Twitter publish from Pitchford seems to again up that assertion.  Right here’s me taking part in guitar and singing with my pal (and lawyer) Wade Callender. #LifeInTexas pic.twitter.com/0bI7A16ICs — Randy Pitchford (@DuvalMagic) April 9, 2016 In November, Gearbox filed a lawsuit towards Callender, claiming that he had violated the corporate's belief and used firm funds for tuition, a house mortgage settlement, authorized charges, and different private bills. The go well with claims that Gearbox had agreed to pay Callender's tuition for an MBA program and residential mortgage in change for his continued employment on the agency, however he left lower than a yr after acquiring his diploma.  Gearbox is asking for greater than $1 million in damages, accounting for cash Callender allegedly spent on firearms and household holidays, in addition to different expenditures.  "As an government with the corporate and totally understanding that Gearbox’s particular belief in him would lead to Gearbox’s assured cost of his private costs handed off as enterprise bills," Gearbox's lawsuit reads. "From 2016 up till his resignation in July 2018, Callender incurred hundreds of ’ value of costs from Disneyland, Frisco Gun Membership, Gun Gear To Go, and sixpackshortcuts.com, simply to call just a few." In December, greater than a month after Gearbox filed its authentic go well with, Callender countered together with his personal lawsuit, with claims that he had been "shamefully" exploited by Gearbox CEO Randy Pitchford. He claims that he was instructed to assist conceal from workers the $12 million cost, which had been supposed as an advance on "Borderlands 2" royalties. The USB drive In an interview with "The Piff Pod," a stage magic podcast, Pitchford gave what seems  facet of the story on the subject of the USB flash drive. The podcast episode was uploaded a day after Callender filed his lawsuit.  In keeping with a report in Ars Technica, Pitchford stated that he left a USB stick containing confidential paperwork at a Medieval Occasions Dinner & Match restaurant. The stick was discovered by an worker, who accessed the drive, which contained details about future Gearbox initiatives — in addition to pornographic materials, he stated. Nevertheless, it was a video that includes a mannequin who goes by the web deal with "Solely 18," he stated. Pitchford, a stage magic fanatic, instructed "The Piff Pod" that he had saved this explicit video to the USB drive as a result of he believed that the mannequin used a sexually-explicit magic trick within the video, and he was attempting to crack the key. He described it as "barely authorized porn," seemingly in an try and refute allegations that it was little one pornography.  Callender additionally alleged that Pitchford used Gearbox funds to host "Peacock Events" at his house, the place grownup males had uncovered themselves to minors. Because the Dallas Morning Information reviews, Pitchford and his spouse made an everyday behavior of internet hosting a non-public "Peacock Theater" of their house, that includes magicians and selection acts, although the content material shouldn't be described as sexually express. 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