TIME Courts

Court Orders Google To Remove Anti-Islamic Movie From YouTube

"The Innocence of Muslims" sparked protests in the Middle East in 2012

A federal appeals court ordered the removal Wednesday of an anti-Islamic film that sparked protests in the Middle East.

Google had previously declined to take the 14-minute Youtube video down, despite calls for its removal from the White House. A San Francisco appeals court ruled 2-1 in favor of the plaintiff,an actress in the film, who claims she was tricked by the producer.

According to the Associated Press, the appeals court found that the copyright of one of the stars of the video had been infringed upon because the actress agreed to appear in something other than what was produced. The “Innocence of Muslims” depicted the prophet Mohammad as a liar and a child molester, and sparked protests around the Islamic world around the same time as a deadly attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya that left four Americans dead.

“Garcia’s performance was used in a way that she found abhorrent and her appearance in the film subjected her to threats of physical harm and even death,” Chief Judge Alex Kozinski wrote for the majority court. “Despite these harms, and despite Garcia’s viable copyright claim, Google refused to remove the film from YouTube.”


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