New York's grand jury has issued subpoenas to Take-Two which order the publisher to produce documents relating to the 'Hot Coffee' mini-game hidden within Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.
According to an official statement from Take-Two, the subpoenas request documents covering various periods from October 1st, 2001, including ones which relate to "the knowledge of the company's officers and directors regarding the creation, inclusion and programming of hidden scenes (commonly referred to as 'Hot Coffee')" in the game.
Take-Two has also been ordered to supply documents relating to acquisitions, partnership deals and earnings, and the company's financial dealings with PricewaterhouseCoopers and Ernst & Young.
Other requested documents include those relating to the submission of San Andreas to the ESRB for rating, plus "certain compensation and human resources documents" concerning current and former officers and directors, and "documents concerning the activities of the company's board of directors and committees there of."
The statement goes on to observe that Take-Two "has not been advised that it or any specific individual is presently a target of the investigation", and "is fully co-operating and providing the requested documents."
It's been almost a year since the discovery of Hot Coffee - a sexually explicit mini-game which could be unlocked using a fan modification or console cheat system. Rockstar initially maintained that the game was a third-party mod, but the ESRB traced the code in all formats of GTA: San Andreas. The game was subsequently re-rated from Mature to Adults Only.
The Federal Trade Commission launched an investigation into the issue and recently ruled that Take-Two should not be fined - providing the publisher agreed to disclose all game content to the ESRB in future. Failure to do so could result in fines of up to US$11,000.