GTA Maker Should Be Prosecuted for Copycat Murder, Claims Thailand Government Official

by Chris Faylor, Aug 13, 2008 8:59am PDT

Game makers should be prosecuted for the criminal activities of players that are inspired by game content and actions, according to a Thailand government official.

The response stems from the recent murder of a Thai cab driver, with the 18-year old murder suspect telling police he was attempting to recreate a scene from Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto IV. The game has since been pulled from store shelves in Thailand.

"When a player copycats a crime he or she sees in the game, the game maker should be prosecuted," Somchai Jaroen-amnuaysuk, deputy director of Thailand's Welfare Promotion, Protection and Empowerment of Vulnerable Groups Office, told AsiaOne, as relayed by GamePolitics.

"Prosecutions will automatically force game makers to act more responsibly," he added.

While Thailand's former Human Security spokesman Somprot Sarakosas believes the government should prosecute all responsible parties, he stressed a need to better educate children about the difference between games and life.

"At the same time, everyone, especially the Education Ministry, should make children aware that games and real life are two different things," noted Sarakosas.

Released on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 this past April, the open-world criminal antics of Grand Theft Auto IV are slated to arrive on PC November 18.

Published and developed by Take-Two subsidiary Rockstar, the Grand Theft Auto series has a long history of controversy for its depictions of criminal activity, with a recent poll suggesting parents are more afraid of their children playing GTA than drinking alcohol or looking at pornography.


38 Threads | 74 Comments

  • Read: Why politicians will continue to say or do anything to get attention or support surrounding any issue. The "government official" who was quoted? He was from the Welfare Promotion, Protection and Empowerment of Vulnerable Groups Office. If this guy really gave a shat about 'vulnerable groups' he would be shouting about how we need to investigate why kids are prone to mimic things they see in popular media in the first place (read: lack of proper parenting). This is like saying we should burn history books when countries war against each other because they "inspired" the action.

    I think the saddest part is that if he said what I proposed then no one would have given him any deserved attention -- and if so everyone would scream "Duh!"

  • Simple solution, pull all copies of the game from Thailand. If you ask me, the Minister should be charged, he didn't ban the game. If we are going to place blame this severely, then we have to look at lack of preventative measures. They let it into their country, and NOW they want to act like it's such a bad thing. If it's so bad, why did you let it in? why isn't it banned?

    Thailand is dumb, publishers should stop shipping games to them if the government is going to be this retarded. Why don't they prosecute the knife maker, clearly it was designed as a weapon to kill someone. Why don't they prosecute car makers when someone is killed in a car accident? RETARDED.

  • Really... what was in GTA4 that hasn't been seen before? I get so angry at people of pointing the finger at everyone but the people who committed the crime...

    • it was the music they were listening to...
    • it was the video games they were playing...
    • it was the movies they were watching...
    • etc...

    People need to understand that everyone has a choice. If they didn't see it in GTA4, I'm sure they could have seen it in several other forms of media many of years ago. The kid(s) responsible in this murder may have blamed GTA4 as a result for what he/she. However, I doubt it actually was. All in all, those responsible should be punished, nobody else.

  • Sadly, I've yet to purchase a 360 or ps3 (soon to be rectified) to play this game to place a proper comment however...

    Would not the simple solution to avoiding the responsibility of so-called players actions in real life be solved by putting a warning at the start up of games like these, kind of like they do with racing movies or jackass movies.

    "WARNING: Mimicking any actions or events from this game in real life is a dumbass move and will result in you being charged, fined and thrown in jail where you could be butt raped by some very large, lonely, desperate and sex deprived inmates. Having said that, enjoy playing GTA4"

  • Christ I can't stop laughing!

    How about this, when Thailand cleans up its streets, its horrible violence, theft and sexual crimes and when the Thai government works to make it a first world nation and not some keep it a primitive backwater country with an insanely corrupt government they can start pointing fingers.

    Until then "Thailand government official" shut the fuck up. You and your government are terrible at your job and maybe hopefully one day the good people of Thailand will rise up and replace you all with people who actually care about Thailand and its people.