California man behind anti-islam video arrested
The Cerritos-based filmmaker behind an anti-Muslim
film that sparked deadly riots in Libya and mayhem in other countries was
arrested Thursday, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office, likely for violating
his probation in a 2010 bank fraud case.
Details of Nakoula Basseley Nakoula's arrest were not immediately
available, and federal court documents on the case were filed under seal.
Nakoula, 55, was expected to make his initial appearance this afternoon.
Nakoula has been in hiding since the violence erupted in response to a
YouTube trailer for the film “Innocence of Muslims.” Federal officials said
media would likely be allowed to view the proceeding via videoconference from a
downtown Los Angeles courtroom.
Federal officials confirmed earlier this month they were investigating
whether Nakoula's involvement with the film may have violated his probation.
Nakoula pleaded no contest in 2010 to bank fraud charges for using phony Social
Security numbers to open bank and credit card accounts, according to court
documents. He was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and ordered not to
use computers or the Internet for five years without prior authorization.
The 13-minute “Innocence of Muslims” video, which was posted on
YouTube, portrays the Muslim Prophet Muhammad engaged in crude behavior,
depicting him as a womanizer and child abuser.
Protests apparently ignited by the video played a role in mob violence
in Libya in which U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were