Federal officials say the man behind the film that sparked the worldwide protests is Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, a convicted felon with a history of using aliases to hide his actions. Nakoula is on probation for bank fraud.
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LOS ANGELES - An actress who appears in the anti-Muslim film that has sparked riots in the Middle East is suing the filmmaker for fraud and slander and Google to try to get the movie's trailer removed online.
Cindy Lee Garcia's lawsuit filed Wednesday in Los Angeles claims the actress was duped by Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man behind "Innocence of Muslims" who has been forced into hiding since its 14-minute trailer rose to prominence last week. She was unaware of the film's anti-Muslim content and that the pages of the script she received had no mention of the prophet Muhammad, according to her complaint.
The lawsuit states Garcia responded to an ad and thought she was appearing in an ancient Egyptian adventure film that was altered to give it an anti-Islamic message.
"The film is vile and reprehensible," Garcia's attorney, M. Cris Armenta, wrote in the document.
"This lawsuit is not an attack on the First Amendment nor on the right of Americans to say what they think, but does request that the offending content be removed from the Internet," the complaint states.
Garcia has received death threats since the trailer began drawing attention, and her suit states she no longer is able to visit her grandchildren as a result. It has also harmed her reputation and caused "shame, mortification, and hurt feelings," the suit states.
An email sent to Google seeking comment was not immediately returned.
A man who answered the phone at the law offices of Steven Seiden, who represents Nakoula on any criminal repercussions he may face, declined comment. He said Seiden does not represent Nakoula, who is on probation for a bank fraud case in which he opened 600 fraudulent credit accounts, in civil matters.
Copyright Associated Press
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