The Daily Star has apologised for wrongly reporting a fake GTA game based on fugitive killer Raoul Moat.
The newspaper admitted to grave journalistic errors in publishing a report on a new Grand Theft Auto game allegedly named 'Grand Theft Auto: Rothbury', based on the final exploits of Raoul Moat who had been on the run after brutally attacking three people, killing one of them.
The author, Jerry Lawton, had published an account criticising the gaming industry for immortalising a murderer, and even went on to contact one of the victim's grandmothers to ask her opinion on the game.
The newspaper said: "We made no attempt to check the accuracy of the story before publication, and did not contact Rockstar Games prior to publishing the story. We also did not question why a best selling and critically acclaimed fictional games series would choose to base one of their most popular games on this horrifying real crime event."
“We apologise for publishing the story using a mock-up of the game cover, our own comments on the matter and soliciting critical comments from a grieving family member.”
The Daily Star has announced that it would be paying damages to Rockstar games, which will be donated to charity, and has undertaken not to repeat the claims again.