Apparently, Nakoula Basselly Nakoula a.k.a. "Sam Bacile", has been convicted of multiple crimes over the years.
In 1997, Nakoula was convicted on drugs charges.
According to a source close to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s office, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula was arrested by the L.A. Country Sheriff's Department on March 27, 1997 and charged with intent to manufacture methamphetamine. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced on Nov. 3, 1997 to one year in county jail and three years probation. The D.A.’s office said he violated probation on April 8, 2002, and was re-sentenced to another year in county jail.Then in 2007 he was caught committing bank fraud. He doesn't appear to have been charged with Social Security fraud, but I don't see how this crime couldn't also be considered Social Security fraud.
Nakoula ran afoul of the law in 2010, when he pleaded no contest to federal bank fraud charges after being indicted in a somewhat intricate scheme involving fake bank accounts created using stolen Social Security numbers. He was given a 21 month prison sentence and had to pay $790,000.And he has the nerve to criticize the security we have in place at our embassies!
The Associated Press, which spoke to Bacile by phone, reported that he went into hiding shortly after the violence erupted at the embassy in Libya. Bacile claimed he felt bad over the death of U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens, but blamed his death on poor security at the embassy. “I feel the security system [at the embassies] is no good,” Bacile told the AP. “America should do something to change it.”UPDATE: Apparently, he wrote his "film" while in prison. I can't seem to embed the ABC News video, but it's worth watching.
The controversial "Innocence of Muslims" was written, produced and directed by a convicted drug manufacturer and scam artist, who has told authorities he actually wrote the script in federal prison and began production two months after his June 2011 release from custody. Authorities say Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, of Cerritos, California, admitted his role in the film.Update 2: Apparently, as part of his probation, he was ordered not use computers:
Questions remained about whether Nakoula's filmmaking and Internet distribution activities might have violated his federal probation and send him back to prison.I'll remove this diary if this information has already been posted elsewhere, I looked, and couldn't find it.
Nakoula pleaded no contest in 2010 to federal bank fraud charges in California and was ordered to pay more than $790,000 in restitution. He was sentenced to 21 months in federal prison and ordered not to use computers, the Internet or online user or screen names for five years without approval from his probation officer. He is still on probation, according to court records.
The YouTube account under the username "Sam Bacile," which was used to publish excerpts of the provocative movie in July, was used again as recently as this week.
A spokeswoman for the U.S. Administrative Office of the Courts, which oversees federal probation offices, and a spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's office in Los Angeles, which prosecuted Nakoula, declined Thursday to discuss his case. Under court rules, the government can ask a judge to send a convict back to prison if there is probable cause to show that probation conditions were violated.
"You don't have the same First Amendment or Fourth Amendment rights than when you're not on probation," said Jennifer Granick, a criminal defense lawyer who specializes in online crimes. "Until you're done with supervision, you don't have full rights. They can search you without a warrant."
The law enforcement official, who spoke on condition of anonymity because this official was not authorized to discuss an ongoing investigation, confirmed the AP's earlier reporting that Nakoula was connected to the persona of Sam Bacile, a figure who initially claimed to be the writer and director of the film. Bacile turned out to be a false identity, and the AP tracked a cellphone number used by Bacile to a home in Cerritos where it found Nakoula.