Ex-dictator Manuel Noriega sues ‘Call of Duty’ makers for hurting his reputation
Former Panamanian dictator and convicted drug-trafficker Manuel Noriega is suing the makers of “Call of Duty” for harming his reputation.
Noriega, 80, is seeking damages from the California video game publisher Activision for portraying him as, “a kidnapper, murderer and enemy of the state.”
Noriega’s attorneys filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles County Superior Court Tuesday. The suit claims that the “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.”
Manuel Noriega is featured as a villain who betrays the player in the popular game, “Call of Duty: Black Ops II.” Activision, which pulled in more than $4 billion in revenue last year, owns several big game series. But “Call of Duty” is among the highest grossing.
Asking for more than $25,000, Noriega’s paperwork calls the game publisher’s actions “malicious, fraudulent, oppressive and intended to injure plaintiff.”
The ex-general’s lawsuits states that Activision’s use of his likeness increases the “realism” of the game and therefore has increased its sales. “Black Ops” earned over $1 billion within a month after launching in November 2012.
The U.S. ended Manuel Noriega’s military dictatorship of Panama in 1989 in an invasion that put Noriega in American prison for nearly two decades.