Manuel Noriega, the former Panamanian dictator who was so corrupt that the U.S. Senate once christened him the chief of the world’s first “narcokleptocracy,” has sued the makers of Call Of Duty: Black Ops II because the game depicts him as evil. As The New York Times reports, Noriega’s suit accuses Activision Blizzard of portraying him as a “kidnapper, murderer, and enemy of the state” in the game. Despite the fact that he’s a relatively minor figure in the Black Ops II story, Noriega is seeking restitution for “lost profits” among other damages.
Fans of military dictatorships may recall Noriega from his rule of Panama in the mid-1980s, a position of power he acquired after decades of collaboration with America’s own CIA. As Noriega’s involvement with kidnapping, murdering, and election-rigging became too brazen for the rest of the world to ignore, the United States cut ties with Noriega and, vainly hoping to make up for lost time, invaded his country to capture him for prosecution on American soil. So, yes, a man who became so evil that even the CIA no longer wanted to associate with him is now suing the creators of a video game because they made him out to be a bad guy.
Noriega joins Mob Wives star Karen Gravano and Lindsay Lohan in the ranks of notorious figures who have recently sued game studios for depicting them too accurately: Both Gravano and Lohan brought legal action against Rockstar Games this year in protest of Grand Theft Auto V characters supposedly based on them. Apparently, Manuel Noriega took note of their efforts, stroked his chin, and said, “I like the way these people think.” Surely a proud moment for both women.