Thursday, September 27
"Innocence of Muslims Filmmaker Nakoula Arrested in L.A."
Bloomberg, Sep 27, 2012 8:04 PM ET
'Innocence of Muslims’ Filmmaker Nakoula Arrested in L.A.
by Joel Rosenblatt
Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, who made the trailer for the film “Innocence of Muslims” that sparked violent outbreaks in several Muslim countries, was arrested for violating the terms of his supervised release.
Nakoula was scheduled to appear at a hearing in federal court in Los Angles today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Suzanne Segal, according to a court website. Thom Mrozek, a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney’s office in Los Angeles, said Nakoula was arrested today in Los Angeles.
The 14-minute trailer shows a fictional attack by Muslims on a Christian family, followed by an account of the origins of Islam depicting Mohammed as a womanizer. Google Inc. (GOOG)’s YouTube blocked access to the clip in Egypt and Libya following attacks on the U.S. missions in those countries.
Jack Whitaker, a lawyer for Nakoula, declined to comment on today’s arrest.
Nakoula, 55, has a criminal history that includes bank fraud by using false identities and a drug conviction. He was questioned this month by U.S. authorities investigating whether he violated terms of his parole.
Under the terms of his release, Nakoula is prohibited from representing himself with anything other than his true legal name, and is barred from using the Internet without permission from his probation officer.
Nakoula was sentenced to one year in jail in 1997 for intent to manufacture methamphetamine, according to Jane Robison, a spokeswoman for Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley. He was given another year for violating probation in 2002.
Nakoula pleaded guilty to one count of bank fraud and was sentenced to 21 months in prison and ordered to pay $794,700 in restitution, according to the June 24, 2010, sentencing document by U.S. District Judge Christina A. Snyder in Los Angeles.
The case is USA v. Nakoula, 09-cr-00617, U.S. District Court, Central District of California (Los Angeles).