The attorney general for Rhode Island has ruled that there will be no criminal charges filed against Kingdoms of Amalur developer 38 Studios, following a four-year investigation questioning whether the outlet defrauded investors.
38 Studios was granted a $75 million loan from state taxpayers in 2010 as part of the developer’s move from Massachusetts to Rhode Island.
Two years later, the studio went bust, having sunk $133 million of investors’ cash into unreleased MMO Project Copernicus and failed to keep up debt repayments to the state for the loan.
It was subsequently sued by the government and accused of deceiving investors over how their money would be spent – with state police colonel Steven O'Donnell saying that "at the end of the day what you see in that report is where it went”. (via GameSpot)
"That's what I thought the public needed to know,” he explained. “We had to prove that money went there. Where that $75 million went is accounted; if it should have gone there or it shouldn't have gone there is certainly not a violation of the law.”
O'Donnell added during a press conference that: "It is our collective duty and responsibility to uncover the facts and let the facts take us where they will take us.
"In order to prosecute any individual for a violation of any Rhode Island criminal statute, we have to establish probable cause that laws were broken,” he continued. “In this particular matter, we have found no probable cause to establish that a crime was committed.
“It is the investigative opinion of the Rhode Island State Police and the Department of the Attorney General that a bad deal does not always equate to an indictment."