Detained Arma devs release note from jail

Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar say they are treated well in Greek jail; Bohemia Interactive "struggling to comprehend" situation.

Jailed Arma developers Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar have released a note from the Greek prison they have been held at for more than two months now. Posted to the duo's support website, Buchta and Pezlar thanked fans for their support and said they are being treated well. Earlier reports suggested the duo were placed in close quarters and slept on the floor.

"Dear Friends, we would like to thank you for the ongoing support of our case. After tiring two months, it is important for us to hear (well, read) words of encouragement and to learn that we are not forgotten," reads the note's first line. "We are treated well, but we feel we should rather be with our families rather than here. Your effort makes it easier to handle. We enjoy your postcards, community news, pictures, and puzzles which are being regularly sent by this website’s magnificent staff, It seems that it will take some time before we could return home and there is certainly much to overcome."

A representative from Arma developer Bohemia Interactive told GameSpot that it is "dismayed" at the recent dismissal of the duo's appeal, but noted it is "encouraging" that the Czech Republic government has commented on the pair's detainment.

"In truth, it's a very sad and frustrating situation for all involved," a Bohemia Interactive representative said. "We're still struggling to comprehend the situation entirely; there does seem to be a lack of information from the Greek authorities concerning their case, aside from some early statements."

"We're still struggling to comprehend the situation entirely; there does seem to be a lack of information from the Greek authorities concerning their case."

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 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.

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

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

Want the latest news about Arma 3?

Arma 3

Arma 3

Follow

Discussion

0 comments
vadagar1
vadagar1

ooo ooohh i got a good one, maybe they should just make the company pay a monetary compensation, since you know Greece is like all broke and on the brink of becoming like some unfortunate poor African nation.

 

its just sad that Greece will burn and crash "economically" , so so sad *evil grin*

vadagar1
vadagar1

screw that, hope Greece gets more economic trouble, SUFFER U ASS HOLES, may the wrath of Olympus make the ground tremble  >:(

ali1111111
ali1111111

what the hell  ,,!!!???!?!?  20 years  for some photos and videos\!!!

 

GeorgeSyll
GeorgeSyll

"We're still struggling to comprehend the situation entirely; there does seem to be a lack of information from the Greek authorities concerning their case, aside from some early statements."

 

 

 Fuck's sake Bohemia.....is everybody retarded in that company?

 

  Seriously how hard is to comprehend that they lied to the greek authorities and they are still lying to them.

 

  How fuckin hard is it to admit that these guys were gathering material for a game, pay the fuckin fine,hand over all the data and get these guys home. Instead Bohemia still insist that they were there on holidays.

 

 Most of you have brains the size of a peanut and you think that national security exists only in movies and games. Wake up kids, national security is real and it isn't something to fuck with.

 Greece is in a very bad state right now and will be for several years. It's not Switzerland, they still have real enemies all around them. The last thing they want now is vital info getting out of the country and getting public.

 

Something stinks here really bad here.

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

Gimme a break, Greece.  Let em go after 6 months.  They're learned their lesson.  They were not spies, they were just stupid.

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

As long as they are treated decently, it's time for the legal process to take its course. I hope they won't remain in jail as the accused any longer than necessary. And best wishes for them in the trial.

collingtonuk
collingtonuk

I should think it would be fairly easy to escape, the guards only work 5 hours a day, get a 4 hour lunch break and finish early for the weekend on Wednesday morning.

duron2
duron2

Wow, as if Greece has anything Militarily good to spy on anyway. I understand both sides, but damn.

Disturbed_88
Disturbed_88

There's something called "PERSPECTIVE"! There are rapists and murderers (not to mention how many lives the politicians have destroyed here in Greece), that serve shorter sentences... So, anyone who thinks this is justified because it's the "Government's business", should have their head checked. The government is there to serve the people and protect them, not the other way around...

genjuroT
genjuroT

These guys are obviously islamic super spies. They were taking photos in top secret camouflage and knocked out 4 guards that spotted them. They flew behind the gates in silent gliders and dropped knockout gas while donning their gas masks. Upon landing they found what they were looking for...a perfect picture of a building. Alas, they were surrounded by 100 special forces troops and were caught in the middle of taking the photo of a building.

bongsyas_23
bongsyas_23

they could still make the game while in jail, that would keep them busy while they wait.

some_guy_ss
some_guy_ss

Maybe they took them because Greece wants their own military sim. ANYONE THOUGHT OF THAT HUH!?!?!?

tightwad34
tightwad34

I remember the last article about them pretty much said they weren't being treated well. Maybe they had to say this so they could avoid some beatings? Don't know, just speculating. Although they did mention getting postcards, pictures and such which would lead me to believe they are at least getting some priviliges. I don't know much about prison and I intend to keep it that way.

Rivboets7
Rivboets7

At least they are treated well!  You have to appreciate the little things!  

PDXmauler97
PDXmauler97

WHY IS EVERYONE ON THIS COMMENTS PAGE TALKING ABOUT THE ARMY!!! I CLICK ON THIS ARTICLE TO HEAR MORE NEWS ON SOME DEVS WHO WILL POTENTIALLY BE LOCKED UP FOR 20 YEARS!!!! STOP THROWING CRAP BACK AND FORTH AT EACH OTHER ABOUT DIFFERENT MILITARY LAWS AND HAVE SOME SYMPATHY!!!! Directed at @JG_overseer13 

Fartman7998
Fartman7998

Like anyone is planning on annihilating Greece any time soon.  We all hate them dang Greeks, don't we?

E-i-N-e
E-i-N-e

Rules are put in place for a reason even if you don't agree with it. You may consider it harsh, but the Greek Government will see it as justice and here is the kicker, it is their country, their rules and their laws which means they have the authority to enforce them and deal out the corresponding punishments, no one else. I'm not going to lie, it sucks that they could face 20 years in prison and be ostracised from their family for so long however there is no way that they didn't know the consequences of their actions. If I was going to take photo's of a military base which I know is an offence, I would want to know the end results if I were to get caught.Hopefully they get let off and can go home to their families, I am sure they will never do it again and the company will learn from their mistakes. However, you can't say it isn't fair and there is no justice being dealt. Like I said, their country, their laws, their rules and their punishments. 

SeAzhrei
SeAzhrei

@collingtonuk That sounds like experience. Should everyone start calling you "The Most Interesting Man in The World"?

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @Disturbed_88 Appropriate sentencing is a major topic for legal scholars and a very valid debate. It unfortunately does not apply to this case since the law regarding espionage existed before the two devs were caught and charged. It is most important for the integrity of any legal system that laws are not altered retroactively; if it's done to grant leniency, you can be sure that at some point it will be done to oppress

dalua360
dalua360

 @Disturbed_88

 indeed, 20 years for some photos.... How many years the Greek government deserves for bankrupting the economy ??? Bunch of scumbags!

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @bongsyas_23 They are probably too pre-occupied now to work on the game. However, in the event that they are found guilty and get jail time. I do hope they will be able to do something they love. It would make their incarceration easier to bear. On the other hand, enforcement to make sure nothing else is embedded in any code their write, even if they stay at a minimum security facility, makes this unlikely. A pity.

dalua360
dalua360

 @bongsyas_23

 I don't know if you're really worried about their health, or if this was the most selfish sentence I've ever heard!

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @tightwad34 I hope they aren't being threatened to lie about their condition. I do take heart that since there is a chance they will be found innocent and released soon, any coersion will come to light and only embarrase the Greek government, so why risk it? On the other hand, if the court has already conspired to make them guilty and keep them in jail for a long time, coersion about their living condition is no longer their biggest problem.

PDXmauler97
PDXmauler97

 @E-i-N-e The issue with what you said is that the Greek government has given "a lack of information". Its not fair to get locked up if you don't know what you are being locked up for. 

collingtonuk
collingtonuk

 @SeAzhrei  @collingtonuk Not sure what you're getting at, my point was that the Greeks are a bunch of workshy layabouts, hence their current economic peril and anger at having to actually work to get paid

Disturbed_88
Disturbed_88

 @Unfallen_Satan I understand why altering laws retroactively can be used against the system to escape a sentence or even enhance it by manipulation. But, my reason says that nothing should be set in stone, especially the laws of a flawed legal system, which allows such inconsistencies and injustice to occur! If laws can never be altered, people will serve the law and not the opposite...

JG_overseer13
JG_overseer13

 @dalua360  @Disturbed_88 The Greek government deserves death :). 20 years is nothing in comparison to 30 or even death sentence which is applied in US. They will be out in less than 10, anyway.

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @PDXmauler97  @E-i-N-e I second your call for the accused to know exactly what they are accused of. I think they do know, if the system has functioned correctly. Bohemia, on the other hand, is not likely to, as information related to the trial is typically restricted only to the plaintiffs and defendants and their lawyers.

JG_overseer13
JG_overseer13

 @PDXmauler97  @E-i-N-e Its right there on the article: They were arrested for possession of photos and vids of military compounds, without any permission.

E-i-N-e
E-i-N-e

 @PDXmauler97 What're you talking about, they're being locked up for taking photo's of an army base, everyone knows it.

Also, it is in their right to withhold information if they choose..

SeAzhrei
SeAzhrei

@collingtonuk Relax it was a joke. Apparently it missed you, sorry.

Disturbed_88
Disturbed_88

 @Unfallen_Satan Bohemia Interactive might not have the means or respect to appeal to the Greek government (they are definitely not going to change their laws), but as a company partially responsible for these peoples current predicament, they do have the means to try and help them in court!!! By perhaps sending the best lawyers they can afford or presenting evidence that they have been on the island to develop a videogame, and nothing more!

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @Disturbed_88 What you said reminded me of the episode "Justice" from Star Trek: TNG. The details of the present real case remain unrevealed and not as clear cut as the TV show, but some elements are quite comparable. If the justice of two people differ, how far is the people of the accuse willing to go to protect them? How can they appeal, and to whom? How much are they willing to risk to the accusers and to themselves? I am definitely watching the development of this case with a new appreciation.

 

I don't fully agree with you on the role of Bohemia though. They, as a business, do not wield the authority or command the respect necessary to appeal to the Greek government, something best left to the Czech government. Their emotional support seems strong. Perhaps they could provide financial and other material support to the devs during their trial, though I don't know what level is appropriate. Ironically, I find issues of this level harder to discuss due to the private considerations, to whose details I am not privy, harder to discuss.

Disturbed_88
Disturbed_88

 @Unfallen_Satan Yes, the pursuit of perfect justice and the need of infallible law enforcement may never be satisfied! And the communication between countries in matters of law and punishment has never been and probably never will be ideal. But, in this case, as in many such cases (especially when they are made public and are subjected to criticism), what is needed immediately is communication and cooperation between governments and nations, not to undermine one's legal system, but to help whomever is to be punished unfairly (as what is fair is a subjective matter).

 

And in this particular case, either the Cech Republic (which was not responsible for sending them there but might be interested in the outcome of the case) or Bohemia Interactive (which are probably responsible for their presence on the island) should try to contact the Greek authorities and try to help these guys!

 

The unfortunate thing is that, in fear of the legal (or other) trouble the might find themselves into, Bohemia Interactive have chosen to abandon their own people... I think the way they reacted to the situation is not only immoral but hurtful to the loyalty of the people who are working for them.

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @Disturbed_88 Justice is the very essence both for which laws strive and that laws try to embody. Yet the pursuit of justice is a quest that may never end.

Unfallen_Satan
Unfallen_Satan

 @Disturbed_88 Very much so. We should always be mindful that any institution we humans create does not grow to become an oppressor of our humanity; the legal system is no exception. The trick is to decide which limitations or changes represent the whole of humanity, as much as any one concept can, and which reflect only a single sub-group of the diversity that defines the human condition.

 

Is a sentence of 20 years incarceration for two computer game developers who might only have inadvertently taken some photos of restricted areas, especially if a child molester receives only 15 years in the same legal system (purely hypothetical), an affront to humanity dignity? Or are the devs simply unfortunate enough to fall under a legal jurisdiction with which they were unacquinted but, due to their presence in the country, a jurisdiction that they implicitly agreed to enter and whose judgment they must ultimately accept? Who should participate in such discussions and who should pass judgment on any exceptions or changes, if any were to be made? The people of Greece? The people of the Czech Republic? The rest of the international community? These are questions without easy answers.

 

Laws exist so that people can co-exist, peacefully. We are all of different values, beliefs, and vices. To force agreement on an emotional level is often impossible. We thus create sets of written agreements that all can see. We don't always get a say in which agreements we accept; no one, for example, can choose which nation he or she is born. But as much as possible, I believe we should study the agreements into which we enter through our actions, and decide only whether to enter into such agreements without passing any value judgment on their content.