Daughter of the notorious mobster who brought down John Gotti is suing the makers of Grand Theft Auto V for $40 million claiming that a minor character was based on her life story and was used without her permission.
Karen Gravano says that “Antonia Bottino” who the players rescue in a random encounter called “Burial.” Gravano appeared on the first three seasons of VH1's “Mob Wives” reality show.
Gravano's father was Salvatore “Sammy the Bull” Gravano, a Gambino family underboss who in 1991 testified against his former boss and helped bring down famous modern day gangster John Gotti. After the trail Gravano and his family went into the Witness Protection Program, moving to Arizona.
In Grand Theft Auto V players meets Antonia Bottino who is the daughter of Sammy Bottino. Sammy Bottino is never seen but Antonia tells his story as a underboss who turned on the Gambetti Family and was the right had of boss Jon Gravelli. The fictional Bottino took his family into hiding out west after being set up on murder charges from a Vice City hit gone wrong. Bottino later took a plea agreement and turned government informer. During the game one of his enemies seeks revenge by having Antonia Bottino kidnapped and buried alive at the dirt bike track out in Paleto Bay, which the player must save her from – or not.
It's not clear if the real life Karen Gravano was ever kidnapped or threatened with live burial but she say's she's publishing “a second book containing parts of not-so known aspects of the story used by” Rockstar Games.
This isn't the first time pop culture figures – no matter their standing – have claimed Rockstar Games has ripped off their likeness or story for its cultural satire that is the Grand Theft Auto series. Lindsay Lohan, a former dancer for Cypress Hill and even a LA strip club have have pursued getting money out of the series, all have been dropped or thrown out so far.
What do you think? Is Gravano's story a matter of public domain? Or is the pop culture stereotype to close to her actual life?
[Via Daily News]