Filmmaker Nakuola Basseley Nakoula arrested

Nakoula Basseley Nakoula

Nakoula Basseley Nakoula

Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man who produced the inflammatory anti-Islam film trailer for “Innocence of Muslims,” has been arrested in California. U.S. Central District Chief Magistrate Judge Suzanne Segal ordered the arrest because in her opinion, his penchant for deceiving authorities made him a clear flight risk. He has been accused of eight counts of violating his 2010 parole, including lying to his parole officer and using aliases. He had also been barred from using computers for five years unless he first obtained permission from his parole officer.

After violence broke out across the Muslim world, purportedly because of the trailer, Nakoula went into hiding. Since then, a senior politician in Pakistan, Ghulam Ahmad Bilour, has put a $100,000 — or £60,000 — bounty on his head and actress Cindy Lee Garcia has filed suit against him for tricking her into making the film. Hizbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah has declared a fatwa against him.

All things considered, the filmmaker may be safer in the custody of California officials than trying to hide on his own. After all, if the State of California could find him, so could other interested parties.



Categories: International, Law, Muslim, Religion

9 replies

  1. Nakoula’s real crime is extremism, but that is yet something we (still) don’t know how to precisely define:

    I would remind you that extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice! And let me remind you also that moderation in the pursuit of justice is no virtue! – Barry Goldwater, 1964

    But, on Barry Goldwater’s Wikiquote page there is also this:

    On religious issues there can be little or no compromise. There is no position on which people are so immovable as their religious beliefs. There is no more powerful ally one can claim in a debate than Jesus Christ, or God, or Allah, or whatever one calls this supreme being. But like any powerful weapon, the use of God’s name on one’s behalf should be used sparingly. The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100 percent. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both.
    I’m frankly sick and tired of the political preachers across this country telling me as a citizen that if I want to be a moral person, I must believe in “A,” “B,” “C” and “D.” Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me?
    And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some God-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of “conservatism.”

    And, as if we needed reminding, Candidate Goldwater also said,

    Mark my word, if and when these preachers get control of the [Republican] party, and they’re sure trying to do so, it’s going to be a terrible damn problem. Frankly, these people frighten me. Politics and governing demand compromise. But these Christians believe they are acting in the name of God, so they can’t and won’t compromise. I know, I’ve tried to deal with them.

    And so I pose the postulate: Religion itself is the problem.

  2. I was curious as to what his past crimes were, so I turned to my usual source first. It looks like the guy is a meth cook with a history of fraud. A slippery scumbag to be sure, and definitely a flight risk.

    From Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nakoula_Basseley_Nakoula

    “According to the Associated Press, “Nakoula struggled with a series of financial problems”.[14] In 1996, a lien for $194,000 was filed against Nakoula’s gas station for unpaid taxes, penalties, and interest dating from 1989 to 1992.[13] A $106,000 lien was filed against him in 1997.[14] He filed for bankruptcy protection in 2000,[13][15] owing several banks a total of $166,500, but later failing to make payments under the bankruptcy plan.[13][16] A $191,000 tax lien was filed against him in 2006.[14]

    The Daily Beast reported that Nakoula was arrested by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in 1997 after being pulled over and found to be in possession of ephedrine, hydroiodic acid, and $45,000 in cash;[13] he was charged with intent to manufacture methamphetamine.[12] He pleaded guilty and was sentenced in 1997 to one year in Los Angeles County Jail and three years probation. According to the Los Angeles County District Attorney, he violated probation in 2002 and was re-sentenced to another year in county jail.[17]

    In 2010, Nakoula pleaded no contest to federal charges of bank fraud in California. Nakoula had opened bank accounts using fake names and stolen Social Security numbers, including one belonging to a 6-year-old child,[3] and deposited checks from those accounts to withdraw at ATMs.[18] The prosecutor described the scheme as check kiting, “You try to get the money out of the bank before the bank realizes they are drawn from a fraudulent account. There basically is no money,” she said.[4] Nakoula’s June 2010 sentencing transcript shows that after being arrested, he testified against an alleged ring leader of the fraud scheme, in exchange for a lighter sentence.[19][20][21] He was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison, followed by five years probation (supervised release), and ordered to pay $794,701 in restitution.[4][22] He was sent to prison, then to a halfway house,[23] and was released from custody in June 2011. A few weeks later, he began working on Innocence of Muslims.[24][23] Conditions of Nakoula’s probation include not using aliases and not using the Internet without prior approval from his probation officer.[25][26]”

"I never considered a difference of opinion in politics, in religion, in philosophy, as cause for withdrawing from a friend." ~ Thomas Jefferson

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