Former dictator Manuel Noriega sues Call of Duty creator

Former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega is the latest public figure to take legal arms against a company for using his likeness in a video game, taking Activision to court for the publisher's portrayal of him in 2012 shooter Call of Duty: Black Ops 2, Courthouse News reports.

Following a route similar to that of actress Lindsay Lohan, who is suing developer Rockstar for allegedly using her likeness in last year's Grand Theft Auto 5, Noriega and his lawyers claim Activision used his likeness to "increase the popularity and revenue generated by Black Ops 2" without his consent.

Noriega was Panama's military dictator from 1983 until 1989, when the U.S. invaded the country and removed him from power. He was sent to prison in 1992, but was tried and sentenced again after his release in 2007. Noriega has been on conditional release in Panama since 2011.

In Black Ops 2Noriega is the central character and catalyst of the "Suffer with Me" mission, in which players track him through the wilderness outside Panama City. The lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court by 80-year-old Noriega, charges Activision with "blatant misuse, unlawful exploitation and misappropriation for economic gain" of his image within this mission.

"Defendants' use of plaintiff's image and likeness caused damage to plaintiff," reads the lawsuit, according to Courthouse News. "Plaintiff was portrayed as an antagonist and portrayed as the culprit of numerous fictional heinous crimes, creating the false impression that defendants are authorized to use plaintiff's image and likeness. This caused plaintiffs to receive profits they would not have otherwise received."

Noriega is seeking damages for unjust enrichment and business practices, lost profits and violation of common law public rights for Black Ops 2's portrayal of him as a "as a kidnapper, murderer and enemy of the state," he said.

More from Polygon

A guided video tour of an Unreal Tournament map

  • Freedom Planet gameplay video

  • Adventure Time trailer

  • Hearthstone: Naxxramas Overview

  • Oddworld: New 'N' Tasty - Overview video

Latest Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.
Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_5353_tracker