NYC-based celebrity chef Matthew Tivy, 54, has been arrested and charged in a criminal complaint with two counts stemming from sexual exploitation of a child and the receipt and distribution of child pornography.
In a statement to the FBI, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said Tivy “took advantage of a minor for his own sexual gratification, even when he knew the minor was only in high school. He then allegedly shared the video he recorded of his encounter with others. Tivy allegedly targeted and exploited vulnerable and innocent children, and for that, he will now face the criminal consequences.”
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Prior to his arrest, the chef — who owns the restaurant Café du Soleil in NYC — appeared on the Food Network’s Chef Du Jour.
According to the criminal complaint, Tivy used a dating app to meet minors, including a 14- or 15-year-old boy, who he allegedly engaged in illegal sexual activity with for the sake of producing a video of the illicit activities.
According to AM New York, he was arraigned on Thursday and pled not guilty to the charges.
His charge of enticing a minor to engage in sexually explicit conduct for the purpose of producing a visual depiction of such conduct carries a maximum sentence of 30 years behind bars, while his one count of receipt and distribution of child pornography has a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.