Cypress Hill Backup Singer Files $250 Million Suit Against Rockstar Games

Michael "Shagg" Washington says Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas based the Carl Johnson character on his childhood without permission.

Since its release in 2004, “Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas” has raked in over $1 billion in profits. The game featured lead character Carl “C.J.” Johnson, which was voiced by rapper Chris “Young Maylay” Bellard. And while ”GTA: San Andreas” had a Hip Hop feel courtesy of voiceovers from fellow emcees Game, Yo Yo, MC Eiht and others, Michael “Shagg” Washington has filed a suit alleging the makers of the video game used and profited from elements of his life.

A complaint filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, states the following:

“The plaintiff had never seen the game. He did not own or play video games, but it seemed possible that he had been included in the game. He then recalled the meeting in or about 2003, and it began to dawn on him that his image had been stolen for the game. Upon examination of images of ‘CJ’ and comparison to his photos from that year and other evidence, it became clear that Rockstar (the developer of Grand Theft Auto) had stolen his image and never paid him.”

Washington is reportedly listed among the “GTA: San Andreas” credits. According to a statement given to The Hollywood Reporter he has also worked as a background singer for Cypress Hill and a model. Washington’s suit, which charges Rockstar with misappropriation of likeness and copyright infringement, calls for $250 million—roughly 25 percent of the profits earned from the game.


  • YungRay

    dis niggas a bum lookin to make aquick buck aint nobody tryna teal his life story cuz dont nobody no it if hes suing GTA for stealing his likness im gonna sue saints row because my guy looks to much like me

  • K.o.D

    OMG He's the luckiest motherfucker EVER, I mean he only have tp say B-B-R1-R2-DOWN-UP and he will never ever DIE and other cheats/magic words. SUE THEM Cypress J (CJ) SUEEEE THEM with a cheat code

  • Hmm

    In other news, Jay-Z has now filed a $300 million lawsuit against the Camel Cigarette company for stealing his likeness for their cartoon spokesman, Camel Joe.

  • Lawless

    Damn if Cj's life was based around his he had the greatest motherfucking childhood. I mean shit, this nigga rode jetpacks as a casual form of transportation as a kid...

  • Roach Cleezy

    lol. What a fool. Git em Nipsey. Sing his broke ass to sleep

  • Anonymous

    this game came out 6 years ago and hes just now filing lawsuits? this nigga prolly copyin CJ

  • This Bitch

    attention all you niggas, all you bitches.. this is the real cj tellin all yall non smokers non drinkers non sippers to get the fuck up out of here

  • YungRay

    dis niggas a bum lookin to make aquick buck aint nobody tryna teal his life story cuz dont nobody no it

  • Tom

    To quote my friend: "I wonder how many hookers he actually killed? Did he have to get fat to hook up with a fat lady in a trailer park? Did he break into the army base and steal a truck? Did he ride around on a bike and shoot gangster's when he first started out to get more money and weapons? This guy's life is amazing why is he a back up singer for Cypress Hill? How many stars do you think he has?"

  • Slacka211

    This wigga's frontin' like he's the real shit. Get some dough, buy your fruits and vegetables and live on... Don't make me run up on you like CJ from San Andreas, fucking back up singer...

  • Wolfman

    NAH! That was ME they took their image from.. Pff.. Gimme a BREAK. He's not gonna see shit from this.

  • Anonymous

    dude must be hurtin for some doe. im sure there are hundreds of guys lives that play out similar to GTA:SA. what a fucktard.

  • Anonymous

    San Andreas is still the best GTA game ever

  • deziboy5150

    san andreas is STILL a bad ass game. point blank. fucc that guy!

  • Hpno

    San Andreas came out in October of 2004 not 2003, get ur facts straight.

  • pierce

    lmfao this lyin ass nigga. CJ from san andreas is modeled to look EXACTLY like DJ Pooh who contributed heavily to the story.

  • STFU

    This "back up singer" is a fucking idiot and a joke. San Andreas was a much-anticipated game to come out back in the day, so how the fuck did this guy miss this supposed image of himself? This guy barely bought the game yesterday when it went on sale for $3.99 because he ain't got PS3 yet or anything else better than PS2. So now he's trying to get some money for it. Pathetic. Work like everybody else you joke and quit sucking Cypress Hill's (and Rockstar's) dick.

  • John Book

    Just for fun, I'd like to see Rock Star Games fill up a courtroom (if this goes to court) with guys that look exactly like the guy in the illustration above. Fill it up just as Eminem did in that awards show a few years ago,where there were multiple Eminem's. Have a room full of C.J.'s. I'm sorry, but if this isn't the most opportunistic crap I have ever heard, and then to promote himself as Cypress Hill's background singer? I myself didn't know they had singers. Can I say that I had a brief conversation with their percussionist Eric Bobo in 1992 in Seattle when he played with the Beastie Boys, and can I sue the Moore Theater because he spoke to me in Spanish, and I did not understand what he was saying? That's what it sounds like.

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