A lawsuit by ex-Panama dictator Manuel Noreiga against Call of Duty publisher Activision has today been dismissed by Judge William Fahey.
The lawsuit was filed in July, with Noriega alleging that the use of his likeness in Call of Duty: Black Ops 2 caused damage to his image.
In an effort to increase the popularity and revenue generated by Black Ops 2, defendants used, without authorisation or consent, the image and likeness of plaintiff in Black Ops 2.
Defendants’ use of plaintiff’s image and likeness caused damage to plaintiff. Plaintiff was portrayed as an antagonist and portrayed as the culprit of numerous fictional heinous crimes, creating the false impression that defendants are authorised to use plaintiff’s image and likeness. This caused plaintiffs to receive profits they would not have otherwise received.
However, Judge Faley ruled that the use of Noreiga’s likeness was protected by free speech. The court also said that it doubted Noreiga’s image had been damaged by the game.