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Anti-Game Lawyer Jack Thompson Permanently Disbarred
Anti-Game Lawyer Jack Thompson Permanently Disbarred
September 25, 2008 | By Leigh Alexander

September 25, 2008 | By Leigh Alexander
More: Console/PC

Infamously vocal anti-video game attorney Jack Thompson is disbarred permanently, says a ruling from the Florida Supreme Court.

The Florida Supreme Court approved a recommendation made by Judge Dava Tunis earlier this year that Thompson receive a permanent disbarment with no opportunity for reinstatement.

Tunis had presided over a long disciplinary proceeding in which the Florida Bar raised 31 separate disciplinary issues concerning Thompson; the Judge determined he was guilty on 27 of these, and in addition to recommending enhanced disbarment, she also recommended Thompson pay legal fees in the amount of $43,675.35 to the Bar. The Florida Supreme Court also ruled that Thompson must pay these fees in addition to approving the Judge's disbarment recommendation.

Thompson was best known in the video game community for his often aggressive public and legal crusades against violent video games, most notably the Grand Theft Auto series. He aimed to levy legal responsibility against Sony and Rockstar Games in a 2003 Alabama murder case, and has also attempted to have Bully declared a public nuisance. His conduct in both these cases largely led to his eventual disciplinary hearing before the Florida Bar.

Throughout the process Thompson sent copious mass emails to the media and to court officials in his own defense and several similar missives and faxes to the Florida Courts. These communications may actually have hurt his case rather than helped it, as faxes he sent to the court were said to contain graphic, inappropriate material -- a fact later cited as another factor in his disciplinary hearings.

Thompson's disbarment comes into effect thirty days from today, or earlier if he closes out any outstanding obligations to his clients before then. Thompson will not be able to apply for a reinstatement to the bar, but according to game weblog Kotaku, the courts will consider a retrial for him if the motion is signed by a Bar attorney in good standing.

In a press release published at Kotaku, Thompson said: "The timing of this disbarment transparently reveals its motivation: This past Friday Thompson filed a federal civil rights action against The Bar, the Supreme Court, and all seven of its Justices."

He continued, "This rush to disbarment is in retribution for the filing of that federal suit. With enemies this foolish, Thompson needs only the loyal friends he has. Thompson always wanted to own a Bar. Now, armed with multiple US Supreme Court rulings that no state bar can do what it has done to Thompson, he is set to own that Bar."

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trout trout
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If he wants to own a bar so badly, now is a good time for him to move to Key West and buy one.

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Not a good news for the marketing plan of GTA V

Haig James Toutikian
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there will be more after him

Matthew Hughes
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Now we will all O.D. on violent video games like the Magical Flying Pink Pony Game.

Christian Johansson
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Ah that's a shame

mos tod
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this is unpatiricular, so stupid. nobody restrict to this.

Stephen Panagiotis
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I'm all for a persons right to opinion, but what he did to companies and gamers alike, the name calling, the complete disrespect for gamers as human beings was clearly unethical and unprofessional all around.

If someone wants to say violent video games are bad, so be it, but he seemed to want to wage a personal war against the industry and all individuals who play and support those games.

I'm surprised he never accused gamers themselves of inciting the murders by just buying them.

So for one of the few times the justice system has earned a few kudos.

Wyatt Epp
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This was a triumph.

I'm making a note here: "Huge success."

Sorry, I couldn't help it. :)

Leon Leithoff
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Well,when you have your head up your bum, you deserve the crud you get on your face.

Mike Lopez
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I'm guessing he intended to incite the disbarment. I believe he likes the notoriety much more than he likes being an attorney. Plus he will gain even more notoriety from trying to battle the Florida supreme court.