Nigel Sherratt, aged 47, was found dead at a house in Cannock, two days after he was trapped in a sting by members of vigilante group Soul Survivors, according to reports.
The group said they had posed as a 14-year-old girl in Facebook chats with Mr Sherratt and claimed he had agreed to meet her – before revealing their true identities and accusing him of being a paedophile.
In footage posted on Facebook, Mr Sherratt denied any wrongdoing but eventually admitted talking to the ‘girl’ on Facebook, claiming he did not know she was 14.
A relative reportedly said they found him dead on Sunday and denied the accusations against him, claiming there was ‘no investigation’.
Staffordshire Police confirmed the body of a man was found in Ascot Drive on Sunday.
The force said they had previously been in contact with him.
Mr Sherratt was seen on the footage being led to a police car but, as an independent investigation has been launched, the force did not confirm whether Mr Sherratt had been arrested before his death.
Police said his death is not being treated as suspicious.
A spokesman said: “Staffordshire Police were called to a house on Ascot Drive, Cannock at around 1.40pm on Sunday, August 5, where sadly the body of a man was found. We are not treating the death as suspicious at this time. The death has been referred to the Independent Office for Police Conduct due to previous contact between police and the deceased.”
Soul Survivors said on Facebook it had received confirmation Mr Sherratt had ‘taken his own life’.
He was filmed as he was sat in his car and confronted with messages allegedly sent by him.
One of the hunters said to him: “This is what you’ve text, this is your writing... Do you understand how serious this is?”
After initially denying any contact with ‘Ellie’, Mr Sherratt told the group he did speak to her but ‘thought she was a woman’.
He added: “I’ve done nothing wrong”.
On announcing his death, Soul Survivors faced a backlash online.
But the group said: “In what we do this is not an outcome that we look to achieve and only aim to put it into the hands of the police.”