ARMA community rallies to help jailed Bohemia developers

Community-created site for Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar calls for action to free developers; users can sign an online petition and leave messages of support.

The ARMA community has rallied to support the two Bohemia Interactive developers who are currently jailed in Greece on charges of espionage, launching a site and an online petition this week.

The ARMA community wants to help the two devs arrested for spying in Greece.

The site pleads with other members of the community to show their support for Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar by leaving messages and signing an online petition protesting the arrest.

The site also contains up-to-date information about Buchta and Pezlar's arrest.

"Facing up to 20 years in prison for taking pictures of an island, just like countless other tourists before them, the Czech developers are being charged with espionage," the site's front page says. "Only because they happen to work on a computer game, a game that portrays Greece as a battlefield for a fictional futuristic conflict between the USA and Iran in the year 2035."

A Twitter and Facebook page for the cause have also been launched, while the online petition has 5,541 signatures at the time of writing.

Buchta and Pezlar were arrested on the Greek island of Lemnos two weeks ago for spying on a military compound. According to Greek reports , the pair were in possession of videos and photos of military compounds in Lemnos at the time of their arrest. The Greek island is the main location for Bohemia Interactive's upcoming shooter ARMA III, with the two reportedly claiming that they were collecting reference material for the game.

Since their arrest, Bohemia Interactive has insisted that Buchta and Pezlar were on holiday, and did not enter any military areas or shoot any footage of military objects for use in ARMA III.

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0 comments
JG_overseer13
JG_overseer13

 @SoreThumbsBill Uhm... I dont think so. You either mean the pirated games or the gambling games.

 @bloodypwns In a country that its on turmoil where its going through whatever Greece is going through, security tightens. Laws are laws and you simply just cant override them for even the slightest, else you open up Pandora's box: Every spy would claim that he is working for a gaming company and gathers material. Besides, asking permission from the govs of each country to take pics of military gear is something standard (and yes it applies to movies too).

proudtiger
proudtiger

All because one pimply bummed nerd wanted the game to be more "hardcore".

bloodypwns
bloodypwns

Seriously, the whole thing is just ridiculous on both ends. Was it so hard for the guys to notify the local authorities that they would be taking pictures around the area for a video game? Or perhaps, they could have at least done some research before hand on all of the shit going down in the country, and learn how not to get caught up in it.

 

Honestly, I don't have anything against Greece, nor should other people, but really? A couple of kids go over there to take some pictures and then get slapped with a possible 20 years in a jail made for potential spies and terrorists? Greece has enough problems at the moment, just as many other countries in the world do, and such a petty little thing like this is pointless for anyone to get miffed over. 

 

Slap Bohemia with a fine (I have no idea why this company is trying to dodge out of such an affair, it's overly apparent they had at least something to do with it), confiscate the kids' cameras and "spy devices" (what a joke), and at the very most, ban them from coming back to the country. It's as simple as that, but unfortunately, these boys got tangled up in the utter shitstorm that is the present-day politics of Greece.

 

I hope that the country doesn't turn into another America. Given, this is just one event out of many, but I don't doubt that we'll be seeing a news article about how some poor fool types up that they're going to "destroy Greece" by partying on their vacation, and the guy gets arrested in an airport because of their country's lack of comprehension for contemporary slang and ability to google a facebook keyword. 

 

(This actually happened in an American airport not too long ago. I couldn't help but laugh at how horribly policed my country has become due to greed and corruption.)

SoreThumbsBill
SoreThumbsBill

Wasn't there a law Greece voted back in 2002 that made video games illegal?

 

It was in effect for a short time I believe but tourists that entered the country with a handheld risked getting arrested and having to pay a fine!

 

I lol'd when I first heard it in the news but I don't really remember the details.

BeateDrabing
BeateDrabing

Because asking permission to take the videos and photos was just going to be a pain. 

 

bomber1992
bomber1992

wow. political upheval. mass protest. economic meltdown a stones throw away, and they choose this to get upset about? Take whatever "Sensative Materials" (BS) they had and let em go. the greeks got bigger problems to deal with.

GeorgeSyll
GeorgeSyll

Bohemia is the one to blame for the whole mess.They didn't even care to obtain permissions to document these locations/equipement etc etc.

 

They just sent two employes to film military instalations.Greek authorities have the absolute right to arrest anyone who is documenting military instalations without official permission.  It's the same thing in every country.

 

And the fact that Bohemia is lying about what they were doing there, only makes things worse.

 

Bohemia should crow a pair,admit what they did, and get these guys out of this mess. If they insist on lying i will never buy and of their products.

Liliroots
Liliroots

There's an island by Eastern Asia that's causing a lot of political headaches between Japan and China.  BI should put that island in their DLC or expansion pack.  

 

Perhaps it's too sensitive for now.  Or make up an oil-rich island in the middle of the Atlantic?

scarletsnake
scarletsnake

Your economy is in the toilet and your "top secret" military installations are infiltrated by two geeky game developers. Yeah, Greece. That's pretty messed up.

DarkSaber2k
DarkSaber2k

"Only because they happen to work on a computer game, a game that portrays Greece as a battlefield" This is wrong wrong WRONG at best and outright lying at worst.

 

"Facing up to 20 years in prison for taking pictures of an island, just like countless other tourists before them" Might want to check the news history regarding Greece, their military installations, and tourists taking pictures near them. They also still haven't explained how pictures of military bases were on cameras of people claiming they took no such pictures. THis is NOT a "persecution for being game developers" issue and it is bullshit to push this angle. It;s a simple matter of "DID they break Greek laws? Y/N"

avengerb
avengerb

I am making a remake of mario...hmmm better take some pictures of NASA underground networks....

CUDGEdave
CUDGEdave

It'll be alright,patch V1.50 will sort it all out

Zonno
Zonno

One country's laws apply to everyone who are in that country at the time. And game developers aren't above the law. As long there's evidence of anyone violating the law, how silly the law may be, there will be a sanction. Also, I don't really know why they'd bother taking photo's on the spot. Google maps is your friend as for realisitc mapping.

christosmage
christosmage

For the love of god. These ppl were taking pictures of military installations for whatever reason then they got caught. Its clear they are not spies. End result they are gonna get deported and never allowed back in the country end of story. ITS THE LAW

Crash_WL
Crash_WL

It's good to know laws don't apply to dumb game developers. Why dumb? Because: "with the two reportedly claiming that they were collecting reference material for the game." and then "Since their arrest, Bohemia Interactive has insisted that Buchta and Pezlar were on holiday, and did not enter any military areas or shoot any footage of military objects for use in ARMA III."

 

Makes sense to you? Fine. Also, it's good to know that my country is the only one that has this dumb law; you know, not having any footage that can show what our bases look like, that can be used to exploit weaknesses etc.

 

Also, it's exciting to know that we are the laziest, dumbest, filthiest (etc etc) people in the galaxy. Plus, I just found out we're the only country in Europe with a high debt - these comments are very informative. I didn't notice, living in the country for decades. Thanks for letting me know, people-who-can't-even-find-it-on-the-map. I'm sure what you say has more credibility than what we, Greek citizens, say.

hickabickabooya
hickabickabooya

Somebody f'd up, and somebody is gonna get screwed. (hint: it isn't the Greeks)

surppo
surppo

what if they really are spy's, i mean these guys story dont add up and momma told me to never trust ivan. lol

DESTROYRS_F8
DESTROYRS_F8

I swear, this situation has "movie material" written all over it.  Stop with the remakes/reboots.

GeorgeSyll
GeorgeSyll

 @scarletsnake How does economy has anything to do with two guys filming military instalations without permission?

 

Are you one of those Antigreece retards? If you are please go read some history, maybe then you will even THANK them instead of mocking them.

 

None said anything about "top secret".Dont make things up. Simply taking photos of military bases is illegal.

And none infiltrated anything dude, they were just taking photos, the authorities saw them and arrested the, simple as that.

 

I have to give it to ya though, you have a broad imagination.......keep it up, you might be famous one day....

kafurher
kafurher

 @scarletsnake Well, we should have got trademark rights on civilization. That way almost all the people in the world would have to pay us every 2 seconds. That is, every time you think or say a greek-deriving word or enjoy one of this country's countless gifts to human culture...

GeorgeSyll
GeorgeSyll

 @DarkSaber2k Absolutely. They broke the one law that is the same in almost every single country on earth. Don't ever film military instalations without official permission. Simple as that.

 

But it's Bohemia's fault for not caring to obtain permissions on what to film or not. They should take responsibility instead of lying. Shame on Bohemia.

nyran125
nyran125

Its ARMA. I would of thought they were up to patch V999.1 by now.

nyran125
nyran125

this sounds like a job for Steven Segal. Hes Above the Law.

GeorgeSyll
GeorgeSyll

 @christosmage No it's not clear that they aren't spies because Bohemia says that they were there for vacations. That's why this thing got so messed up. The employer doesn't want to take responsibility.

nyran125
nyran125

do you know whats awesome about greeks? greek salad and Souvlakis.

Zonno
Zonno

 @nyran125 Lol. Too bad Bohemia didn't send Steven to do the job.

GreggD
GreggD

 @nyran125

 What is souvlaki, exactly? I've seen it mentioned here in the comments, but never before...I'm genuinely curious.

kafurher
kafurher

 @DarkSaber2k  @scarletsnake My comment might be a little bit "trolling" but it's insufferable to see everyone pointing fingers to your country in the past 3 years just because it didn't manage its economics well for some decades, while that same country is responsible for almost everything that the people pointing the fingers call civilization for the past 3000 years. And of course the whole trademark thing is a figure of speech.

Liliroots
Liliroots

 @Zonno  @nyran125 This reminds of me a movie, I think James Bond, where an Asian spy said something along the lines of 'your government spent millions on a spy satellite, we send a guy with a thousand dollar camera.'

Zonno
Zonno

 @Liliroots  @nyran125 Well, parts on the map like Fort Bragg in the US have got some special treatment, but nothing incomprehensible. I don't suppose they need exact military base layouts. Those aren't that sophisticated anyway.

christosmage
christosmage

 @SythisTaru  @GeorgeSyll The problem there is complex, greek islands are small in size, they are always threatened by neighboring Turkey so u have to have military installations there. But there are local residents there also u cant militarize all the islands nor ban tourists because its a source of revenue for the locals so the only thing u can do is ban photos of installations and military bases. Ppl have to remember that its a small country with small island its not like us where u can build your military bases in the middle of nowhere. The Arma guys plobably thought they could get away with a little research but the were caught. And to conclude its the law of the country if u break it u pay.

Crash_WL
Crash_WL

That's what I've been saying since this story started. It's just that I'm fed up with all these uninformed, uneducated people that rush to spew their garbage against my country and its people, and this petition is the cherry atop the cake. Its description is full of lies, makes it sound like we go around arresting tourists, and whoever dares cross the borders into our country will be put into the electric chair.

Liliroots
Liliroots

 @Crash_WL  @Evilbunz  @GreggD  @nyran125 Pretty sure he isn't lol

 

Best way of getting out of this hairy situation.  

1. Make the game very good.

2. Don't make the Greek government look weak. 

3. Show it to an appropriate judge and make him/her play it. 

4. Convince that judge to take on the case.

5. Make the people play it.

6. Them two get a slap on the wrist.

6. Voila, home-free developers. 

nyran125
nyran125

YOU...............need to go to you nearest greek resturant or fast food place in your area and order a souvlaki. Make sure the people that are serving you are really Greek. Sometimes chinese people pretend that they know how to make Souvlakis.

Crash_WL
Crash_WL

 @GreggD  @nyran125 It's a sandwich of some sorts, but not really one. You have very small slices of meat rolled inside a "pita", together with sliced tomatoes, fries, some lettuce, probably some sauce or "tzatziki" (which is essentially some sort of sauce, made of yoghurt, garlic and cucumber), and you're set. There are many variations of it, just look it up.