By the Book

By the Book
Game GTA V
Protagonist Michael De Santa
Trevor Philips
For Steve Haines
Objective Torture Ferdinand Kerimov to get information on a suspected terrorist and assassinate the target
Target Tahir Javan
Location Dutch London St in Banning, Los Santos
Fail Killing the wrong target
Dave Norton dies
Ferdinand Kerimov dies
Unlocked by Three's Company

By the Book is a mission in Grand Theft Auto V given to protagonists Michael De Santa and Trevor Philips by corrupt FIB agent Steve Haines from a warehouse along Dutch London St in Banning, Los Santos.


The mission is triggered automatically via a phone call from Agent Haines. Agent Haines tells either Michael or Trevor to meet him at a warehouse off Dutch London St in Banning. If the player arrives as Trevor, Michael is waiting outside smoking a cigarette. Trevor tells Michael that he needs to give up smoking and instead take up speed. If the player arrives as Michael, Trevor is seen defecating behind a dumpster. Michael asks what's wrong with Trevor, to which he responds by saying he had abandonment issues.

After going inside the warehouse, Trevor and Michael meet Agent Haines' friend Devin Weston, CEO of Merryweather Security Consulting, as he is leaving. Michael asks Agent Haines why he and Trevor are here, and Agent Haines brings Ferdinand Kerimov, the man that Michael and Trevor kidnapped from IAA custody, into the room. Agents Haines and Norton believe that Kerimov is an Azerbaijani spy and is withholding information valuable to Haines; however, Kerimov denies his involvement in any illegal activity. Agent Haines restrains Kerimov to a chair, preps various tools for torture, and hooks an ECG monitor up to him. Kerimov reveals that the man the FIB is looking for lives in Rockford Hills and works at the Azerbaijani consulate.

Michael and Agent Dave Norton drive to Rockford Hills, not far from Michael's house, to locate and assassinate the target while Trevor and Agent Haines remain at the warehouse to torture and interrogate Kerimov. On the way, Michael asks Agent Norton if Agent Haines is going to be a problem, to which Agent Norton says yes but there is nothing they can do about it. Michael tells Agent Norton that keeping secrets has become more difficult since Trevor is now working with them. Upon arriving at the house in Rockford Hills, Michael and Agent Norton find the reality show Real Cunts of Suburbia is being filmed there and not their intended target. Agent Norton calls Haines to tell him that they have a false lead and asks for a new address.

The game then shifts back to the warehouse where Trevor is selecting a torture method. Trevor can either waterboard Kerimov with the Jerry Can, pull Kerimov's tooth with the pliers, hit Kerimov with the monkey wrench, or electrocute Kerimov with the jumper cables hooked to a car battery; alternatively, Trevor can spark the clamps to intimidate Kerimov. Tortures can performed in any order; however, Kerimov's health and heart rate must be closely monitored during the torture procedure. If he goes into cardiac arrest, Trevor has to use an adrenaline shot to revive him; Trevor can revive Kerimov up to three times.

After the first torture session, Agent Haines asks Kerimov about Tahir Javan; he states that Javan lives in Chumash on the Western Highway. The game shifts back to Michael and Agent Norton, who are at a coffee shop waiting for the new address. On the way to Chumash, Michael states that Trevor is now a problem for Agent Norton. Agent Norton reveals to Michael that he posed as the late Bradley Snider to maintain the illusion that he is still alive and use it as a means to keep an eye on Trevor. Michael and Agent Norton set up across the road from Javan's beach house. Michael asks for a description of the target, leading to another torture session at the warehouse. Kerimov tells Haines that Javan is average height, average build, and middle aged. Michael states that the description is too broad as Javan is hosting a party at his house, and no one in particular stands out. After the third torture session, Kerimov reveals that Javan has a bushy beard. Michael states that the description is still too broad, as many of the male party-goers have beards. After the final torture session, Kerimov reveals that Javan is a chain smoker and is left handed. Michael finds the target, smoking by himself. After Michael kills Javan, Agent Haines tells Trevor to kill Kerimov as he has outlived his usefulness; however, Trevor instead frees him and takes him to Los Santos International Airport. On the way, Kerimov tells Trevor that he wants to go back to his family; however, Trevor states that he cannot see his family again and needs to leave the country for his safety. Also, Trevor gives a brief lecture on how torture is an ineffective tool in attaining information, as Kerimov was willing to give the information Haines wanted.

Secondary objectives

Objective Description
Don't Stop Me Now Complete the mission without Mr K's heart stopping.
Electrocutioner Electrocute Mr. K with the jumper cables.
The Tooth Hurts Pull Mr. K's tooth with the pliers.
Wrenched Hit Mr. K with the monkey wrench.
It's Legal! Waterboard Mr. K with the jerry can.


  • This mission generated significant real-world controversy regarding its use of torture.
  • The Japanese version of this mission was edited, instead of Trevor picking any of the torture tools, he ignores all of it.
  • The player can successfully complete the mission early after the second torture session, when Kerimov gives the target's height and weight; however, to earn a gold medal for the mission, the player must go through all four torture sessions, using all four methods.
  • The player can repeat any of the torture methods; however, this will prevent the player from earning a gold medal. Also, the player receives unique dialogue depending on the order of tortures performed.

Video walkthrough

Xbox 360 Version - GTASeriesVideos PS4 Version (First Person) - GTASeriesVideos