Jailed Innocence Of Muslims filmmaker Mark Basseley Youssef still wants the world to be able to watch the controversial trailer of the anti-Islam film on YouTube. “Mr. Youssef said he believes in the message contained in the film and he does not want the trailer to be removed from YouTube,” said a filing (read it here) Wednesday by Google’s lawyers. The 14-minute trailer was the cause of violent protests around the Muslim world. Earlier this week, an Egyptian court sentenced Youssef and six others associated with the film to death in absentia. Timothy Alger, the attorney for YouTube owners Google, visited Youssef at LA’s Metropolitan Detention Center on Tuesday to get information from him in relation to actress Cindy Lee Garcia’s legal attempts to have the trailer removed from the Internet. “Mr. Youssef said that while other people assisted with the direction and production of the film, it was his creation, and he retains control over the film. He told me that his son uploaded both the English language and Arabic versions of the trailer for the film, now entitled Innocence Of Muslims, to YouTube at his request,” says Alger in the filing. Youssef, who is in jail for a year on parole violations related to a 2010 bank fraud case, has gone by various aliases including “Nakoula Basseley Nakoula” and “Sam Bessi.”
Earlier this month, Youssef provided Google with a release that he says Garcia signed for her paid performance in the film. The August 9, 2011 dated release (see it here) for Desert Warriors, the name the film was initially given, seemingly contradicts Garcia’s claim that she never signed a release in the making of the film. In her efforts to get the film trailer taken down from YouTube, Garcia has asserted that she has a copyright claim on Innocence Of Muslims. While some of the personal details on the form seem to be correct, Alger says that Garcia’s lawyer Cris Armenta “has expressed doubt that the Release is genuine.” A federal court hearing is scheduled for December 3 in Garcia’s case. “My client and her entire legal team are appalled that Google and YouTube, at the 11th hour before a hearing that has been scheduled for weeks, have submitted and are relying on the testimony of convicted fraudster Mark Basseley Youssef,” said Armenta today. A previous attempt to get the video removed from YouTube by Garcia in California Superior Court failed and the judge in the federal case denied her request for a temporary restraining order last month.
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