12:00 AM, November 09, 2012 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, November 09, 2012

Anti-Islam filmmaker jailed in US

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Afp, Los Angeles


Mark Basseley Youssef

The man behind the anti-Islam video blamed for sparking deadly protests in the Muslim world was jailed in the US for a year on Wednesday for breaching the terms of his probation for a previous offense.
Mark Basseley Youssef, 55, will serve the sentence in a US federal prison after he admitted four allegations of using false identities -- a violation of the terms of his probation for a bank fraud conviction in 2010.
He had faced up to two years behind bars, but four other charges were dropped as part of a plea deal.
Youssef was identified as the main man behind "Innocence of Muslims," an amateurish film which defamed Prophet Mohammed triggering a wave of violent protests that left dozens dead in September.
The video was also linked to the September 11 attack on the US consulate in Benghazi in which US ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed.
In February 2009, a federal indictment accused Youssef and others of fraudulently obtaining the identities and Social Security numbers of customers at several Wells Fargo branches in California and withdrawing $860 from them.
He was jailed for 21 months and ordered not to use computers or the Internet for five years without authorization, and also banned from using fictitious names during his supervised release.
Youssef was arrested in September for eight probation violations. At a hearing last month he denied all counts, but on Wednesday he admitted to four, in return for the other four being set aside.
US District Judge Christina A Snyder said Youssef, who has already spent five weeks in custody, must spend 12 months behind bars, followed by four years of supervised release.
Youssef was previously listed as Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, and known as Sam Bacile when the protests about the video emerged.
According to court papers, Youssef wrote and produced the trailer, and uploaded an English-language version of it onto YouTube on July 2, followed by a version dubbed in Arabic on September 11, the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.

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