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Evo, the world’s biggest fighting game event, has been cancelled outright after companies and competitors pulled out following sexual abuse allegations made against its president.
Evo was due to hold an online-only tournament in 2020 due to the pandemic. However, on Thursday it confirmed it had cancelled the event outright to make Evo “a better model for the stronger, safer culture we all seek.”
Evo said in a statement: “Over the past 24 hours, in response to serious allegations recently made public on Twitter, we have made the first of a series of important decisions regarding the future of our company.
“Effective immediately, Joey Cuellar will no longer be involved with Evo in any capacity. We are currently working towards his complete separation from the company and have relieved him of all his responsibilities.
“Going forward, Tony Cannon will act as CEO; in this position, he will take a leadership role in prioritizing greater accountability across Evo, both internally and at our events.”
It added: “Progress doesn’t happen overnight, or without the bravery of those who speak up against misconduct and injustice. We are shocked and saddened by these events, but we are listening and committed to making every change that will be necessary in making Evo a better model for the stronger, safer culture we all seek.
“As a result, we will be canceling Evo Online and will work to issue refunds for all players who chose to purchase a badge. We will donate the equivalent of the proceeds as promised to Project HOPE.”
In a Twitter post, Cuellar said he was “truly sorry.”
“I was young and reckless and did things I’m not proud of. I have been growing and maturing over the past 20 years, but that doesn’t excuse anything. All I have been trying to do is become a better person.”