A U.S. district court ordered Google to remove an anti-Islamic YouTube video Wednesday that has sparked international protests since 2012 and instigated numerous death threats against an actress.
The Ninth District Court of Appeals granted a temporary takedown order of “Innocence of Muslims” at the request of Cindy Lee Garcia, who filed a copyright suit against Google after claiming she was tricked into the role, which did not resemble the one she agreed to at all.
Garcia was one of multiple project participants that were misled about the nature of the film. After finishing what was originally dubbed “Desert Warrior,” for which she was compensated $500, Garcia’s part was heavily edited to project an anti-Islamic message, including the line, ”Is your Mohammed a child molester?”
After an Egyptian cleric issued an Islamic legal judgment against everyone involved in the film, Garcia began receiving death threats. Wednesday’s ruling overturns a previous lower court ruling that asserted Garcia’s claims weren’t sufficient reason for removing the video.
“The problem isn’t that ‘Innocence of Muslims’ is not an Arabian adventure movie: it’s that the film isn’t intended to entertain at all,” Judge Alex Kozinski said explaining the court’s majority decision, according to a report by The Verge. “The film differs so radically from anything Garcia could have imagined when she was cast that it can’t possibly be authorized by any implied license she granted.”
Google has already removed the film in certain parts of the Middle East, along with various governments in their respective countries. The film’s director has since been arrested for violating probation on another charge, and Google must now remove the video within 24 hours.