Czech Republic president pledges support for jailed Arma devs - Report

Czech leader Václav Klaus has urged Greek president to personally give the matter "special attention".

The president of the Czech Republic has stepped in to pledge his support for the two jailed Arma developers who are currently being held in Greece on charges of espionage.

Czech leader Václav Klaus wrote a personal letter to Greek President Karolos Papoulias (translated by Eurogamer), urging him to treat the matter with "special attention".

"This case is very sensitive to the Czech public and also to me as president of the Republic," Klaus wrote.

"The fate of our citizens anywhere in the world matters to us. I have no doubt that the democratic Greek authorities...will consider this unfortunate matter impartially and independently. Even I do not in any way want to interfere with their work.

"I want to ask you, Mr President, to follow this unfortunate affair with special attention considering the excellent relations between our nations so this does not throw unnecessary shade onto our relationship."

The two Bohemia Interactive developers Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar remain in Greek jail after 70 days. They were recently denied bail.

Buchta and Pezlar were arrested on the Greek island of Lemnos in September for spying on a military compound. According to Greek reports, the pair was 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. A support site for the pair has been established by the community.

A representative of Arma studio Bohemia Interactive told GameSpot earlier this week that due to ongoing political strife in Greece, Buchta and Pezlar are no closer to release.

Buchta and Pezlar face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

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0 comments
maxwell97
maxwell97

One can never be sure in such a case.  This may be used as retaliation by the Greek government for Czech opposition to certain financial measures. 

downloadthefile
downloadthefile

I understand the devs made a statement not backing these guys, but what if that's really the truth?  That these guys were posing as video game developers in order to steal information from Greece without being punished for it due to a "misunderstanding," and the company didn't want them to snoop around like they did?  Certainly would not be out of the ordinary as far as government plots go.

havocmerc
havocmerc

178k standing forces? For What? Who on earth would want to invade Greece?  The kind of Persia?  As I recall that didn't go so well the last time.

angry-slavicboy
angry-slavicboy

They want money. If Greece belived they were spies it would have been a big political incident

N4o7A
N4o7A

That's nice of the Czech Republic's President to offer his support to help get these two guys out.

jack00
jack00

I don't think spies would call out for their Fathers and Mothers if they were caught spying like these 2 did...

Vodoo
Vodoo

The developer they work for REALLY screwed them over by saying they weren't collecting anything for the game. Instead, they should've said "we're currently making a game based on this location and it is very possible the two were collecting material on their own, while on vacation there." IF they ever get home, they should burn down that studio for helping keep them there by knocking the legs out from under the only defense they have.

AzatiS
AzatiS

Go to Greece --- > Take illegal military photos/phootage ---> Get caught ---> Say that you working for a gaming company that is making military based games ---> Get out of jail ---> Go home like nothing happened.

 

 

If some of you think this is THAT easy then every single spy on earth would do the same. Start working for a video game company and spy the hell out of Greece or any other country...

 

Yet if you ask any guy with BRAINS , working for video gaming company or not , WOULDNT EVEN THINK ABOUT TAKE A PHOTO of military base/material in a foreign country. How dummy is that?!!

 

As you can see this thing is super complicated and stop hating Greece for that. Your own country would do the same. period

 

 

downloadthefile
downloadthefile

You can't go into a country with security concerns and take photos of their bases so you can put them in a video game.  It doesn't matter that they're not spies, they wanted to use military secrets which could put Greek security at risk.  You can't screw around and get away with it just because you aren't a secret agent or something.  They should absolutely prosecute these two guys.  I'm sorry they were so stupid as to do what they did, because it is a really bad mistake to make and I know it wasn't done with malice.

TANKER_LINK
TANKER_LINK

Greece I really screwing around here, holding these two will only make them look bad. All they need to do Is confiscate their equipment and send them off.

DevilD2005
DevilD2005

The problem I see, is their own coworkers are disavowing them. No matter what happens, no one is going to look good after this settles. (maybe the president of the Czech Republic, but thats it)

christosmage
christosmage

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.

lextexrex
lextexrex

Hmmm... Czech trying to help out their citizens in other countries right after they detained Lamb of God's singer for manslaughter with poor evidence and a weak accusation. After that, they set a bail amount and double it once he paid it.  After what happened, I don't think I will ever visit the Czech after seeing how their legal system works.

xkurupt718x
xkurupt718x

A representative of bohemia specifically said they were on holiday. I can understand wanting to work even when you are not officially on the clock but you gotta remember that you still have to follow rules. these guys were stupid not to ask for permission to take photographs.

 

people are so hypocritical. if some1 wanted to use your house for their video game you wouldnt like it if they took pictures of your house and what goes on around your house without asking you for permission. Sad story but these guys made a huge mistake and now they gotta suffer the consequences

pezzott1
pezzott1

People dont just get locked up for no reason. Taking pictures of nothing for two employees on holiday doesnt quite fit. 

CincoToes
CincoToes

Shoulda just used google maps.

lekzero
lekzero

Arma series, the best graphics, poor animations, glitches.....bugs but i like it anayway

vasilas43
vasilas43

Also it is said they were filming around the military base, including base supply routes and special forces emergency reinforcements routes. Who knows....

emperiox
emperiox

I say the 2 terrorists should just be tryed for treason. It's the only way!!!

wezkilla
wezkilla

they will stay in prison for the rest of their lives, espionage is a big crime, doesnt matter if they said they wernt doing that, how does anyone know 

 

tuff shit really

youre_in_denail
youre_in_denail

jail them for life. they are spys and helping czech plan an attack on greece.

d_rokko
d_rokko

This is like some Russian "devs" coming to the US on "vacation" and trying to map Area 51.  Dumb move, ignorant move, criminal move, and they deserve whatever happens to them.

vasilas43
vasilas43

I read somewhere on a military site that they were possessing night vision equipment as well!! But I can't confirm this is true. Although that site has proven faithful enough for other military matters.

demonkingx5
demonkingx5

instead of locking these guys away this right winged idiot needs to focus on getting its people out of poverty 1st 

wexorian
wexorian

1st of all why they jailed em , What kind picture they took? SOme unpleasant pictures where is general who cheat on wife? Or mass destruction weapon or aliens on base? :)))))) 

mav_destroyer
mav_destroyer

Good for them, I hope this matter gets resolved soon.

Falcon2000
Falcon2000

My biggest question in this whole thing is why does everyone conclude that they WERE in fact intending to use the material for Arma 3.  I mean it is logical, yes, but at the same time the company has specifically stated they were OFF the clock - ie on holiday - and NOT collecting info for the game.  If they were truly intending to use the research for the game, why would their company not state that in their support?    That is what brings up legitimate questions in my mind, especially assuming the greek info that cetti09 posted is correct.even for a game you wouldn't need a whole TOE, just the types of vehicles/gear in general. Want to give them the benefit of the doubt but, I can see legitimate issues here. Extremely bad judgement at the least

vasilas43
vasilas43

Photos and videos they took, gave all evidence to Greek authorities of what they were doing. Bohemia denied they were working for Arma 3.

Verenti
Verenti

Vaclav Klaus? I'm sure he took half of the letter to tell the Greek President how rotten the EU is, and took the other half to explain how the Commission is REALLY at fault. "Oh, and BTW, there are some game developers too." AMIRITE? ...Am-Am I the only one who... Right. EU joke and... That's the door right? Okay. Right. Sorry.

gufberg
gufberg

"throwing shade" lol ..Is this letter a diplomatic way of saying "Why dont you make sure this ONE case actually goes THROUGH your incapable legal system so we dont have to make a big issue out of this" how Games of Thronesy  

Lamesy
Lamesy

"throwing shade," seriously Eurogamer? co-translated by urbandictionary much?

wildamnesia
wildamnesia

The Producers of Bang Up Abroad will be happy.  This will make a great show.

Aderdunn_3
Aderdunn_3

Why so much unreasonable hate?!?(I ''love'' that some racist A-holes in the comments' section spam hate comments about Greece in general-not just the greek military)They broke the law ,they're gonna have some trouble...Simple as that!¯\_('_' )_/¯

dionycef
dionycef

The Czech Prime Minister is always crying out that Greece should be thrown out of Eurozone and that Greeks are lazy etc. 

What a great prologue for asking favors after!! Excellent relations indeed!

dionycef
dionycef

Dear friends,

 

I fail to understand which is your problem exactly:

1. Greece has a law ,which you dont agree with ?

2. Greece is enforcing their laws?

3. Greece has financial (debt ) problems?

4. Devs should be acting as they see fit?

 

No 1 & 2 is really not your problem to bitch about. No. 3 (Please check your country's debt and revert). No 4 You are morons if you believe that

cetti09
cetti09

ok after reading a couple of greek sites about the entire thing they had asked for permission to take pictures and map both islands "Lymnos" and "ai stratis" which the name is used in game as "stratis" They had recieved they ok to map the island but NOT military instalations. After they got cought for a typical security check near a military facility they were checked and they had all kind of information regarding detailed locations and maps and military strengths of the greek military force in Lymnos and ai stratis. They are now waiting to be charge after 70+ days in jail not for espionage tho.  Thats what the greek sites are saying. Unfortunatly the legal system in Greece is slow cause the matter would have been resolved already.

fuzzier
fuzzier

In Sweden you wouldnt get jail for taking photos and videos of military buildings. Even if "spying" thats stupid.

Ishiban
Ishiban

Sounds like these two were overly committed to the game they were making.  If that's truly the case, I hope the sentence is lessened.  Though, it could all be a pretext for subterfuge. 

ShadowOfKratos
ShadowOfKratos

20 years in prison? Are you serious?

 

These news were funny at first, but now this is plain stupid and like the greeks trying to act like the ones with the butter and the cookie. Like I said, stupidity. Too many movies I say... Are they trying to prove point? Fine we get it already... Greek military is strict, now get over yourselves and see some sense and reason.

 

Was there even any sign anywhere warning not to enter or not take pictures of the surroundings? If not, then the devs can't be held responsible and should be released... like immediately!

cetti09
cetti09

since non of u realize lymnos is from a stratigic point of view a very big asset to the greek military and airforce. Also the werent just taking pictures they were mapping the island and without proper permission to do such a thing on island that is mostly for military purposes that can be misunderstood. They were not allowed to do such a thing in the first place but they went ahead and did without getting the permision they asked for. I do not consider they were doing espionage or anything of the sort but it illegal.

On the other hand if you want to talk politics as the Germans to pay of the debt that they owe to the greek people for all they did in the second world war which fyi they payied several other countries. Before making dumb remakes read a little.

victorlamy
victorlamy

its funny to think anybody would use photos and take sanpshots of a military base. do the potential enemies of greece not have millions of $$$ in the air?

aryeec
aryeec

Pretty sure this section is copy-pasted between every update."Buchta and Pezlar were arrested on the Greek island of Lemnos in September for spying on a military compound. According to Greek reports, the pair was 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. A support site for the pair has been established by the community.

A representative of Arma studio Bohemia Interactive told GameSpot earlier this week that due to ongoing political strife in Greece, Buchta and Pezlar are no closer to release.

Buchta and Pezlar face up to 20 years in prison if convicted."

Rubbish71
Rubbish71

Best news so far. Glad to hear some noise is being made by the Czech leader, I expect that will help resolve this situation faster. Looking forward to hearing of their release soon.....I'll have a drink to that......in fact....think I'll have a drink right now.

bongsyas_23
bongsyas_23

the could still make the game while in jail.. so what is the problem?

tgwolf
tgwolf

The fact that the leader of another nation, and one that seems to have a working relationship with Greece has taken action in this manner just makes the implications a whole lot more chilling. 

SolidTy
SolidTy

Insanity. I'm glad to see a World Leader step into this matter.

ceromaster
ceromaster

The devs broke the law in another country..it doesn't really matter if they were only trying to get material for their game, they were really stupid for what they did.

I do wish this they get out, but I don't see how pple can think they did nothing wrong.

jrabbit99
jrabbit99

I'm confused. The two jailed devs were "claiming that they were collecting reference material for the game." 

 

The studio however "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. "

 

Seems the stories don't collaborate. Who knows what actually happened...