Bohemia insists arrested Arma devs not spying

Studio rep maintains detained developers' innocence, says pair visited Lemnos for vacation, and did not enter any military areas or shoot video for use in Arma III.


Arma developer Bohemia Interactive has released an additional update on the situation regarding the pair of detained developers who have now spent more than a week in custody. A statement from creative director Jay Crowe again insists that the two--Ivan Buchta and Martin Pezlar--visited the Greek island of Lemnos as tourists on vacation, and did not enter any military areas or shoot any footage of military objects for use in the company's upcoming shooter Arma III.

Bohemia maintains that its employees are innocent.
Bohemia maintains that its employees are innocent.

Crowe said he has met with Buchta and Pezlar, as well as their lawyer and the Greek police, and called these assertions "false and without substance." He said the pair's work over the past two years on Arma III spurred the two to take a vacation there.

According to Crowe, Buchta and Pezlar took photographs and video in public areas, just like any other tourist may do. He specifically mentioned that some of this footage, possibly the part that landed the two in trouble, included shots of the main road near the international airport, as well as aircraft hangars.

"We sincerely hope that the whole situation is no more than an unfortunate and deep misunderstanding," Crowe said.

Crowe added that Bohemia Interactive's in-game version of Lemnos is "far from an identical replication of the real place." He said the location has been "heavily modified" to suit the game's story, which puts players in a fictional 2035 setting.

Lastly, Crowe relayed a message from Buchta and Pezlar, sent from the pair's holding place in Mytilene.

"The conditions are tough, but the people we meet treat us fairly and correctly," reads a line from the statement. "It is all a completely absurd misunderstanding that will certainly be quickly explained. We mainly think of you, our families; you have to stay calm and not to worry about us. We hope we will meet soon."

Last week, the Greek police and the Czech embassy in Greece released statements regarding the details of the pair's arrest. The Greek police confirmed Buchta and Pezlar had been charged with espionage, and that an investigation conducted by officers found that the developers were in possession of various audio-visual material with footage from military facilities in Lemnos and the surrounding area.

A statement from the Czech Republic embassy in Athens, Greece confirmed that it is "closely following the case," but declined to share further information, so as to "avoid any further misunderstanding."

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