Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, the man allegedly behind the anti-Islam movie Innocence of Muslims, is actually a federal informer spilled to investigators about an elaborate bank fraud scheme he was involved in to avoid jail time and has also been arrested for making meth, a new reports show.
The Daily Mail reported the allegations against Nakoula Basseley Nakoula and the checkered past he had before putting together the incendiary movie. Nakoula reportedly opened a series of bank accounts under fake names, then transfered money between them with fake checks and withdrawing it before those checks bounced.
The scheme netted Nakoula Basseley Nakoula 21 months in prison after the FBI caught on in 2009, but it could have been longer if Nakoula hadn’t turned in the ringleader of the $800,000 scam, the Smoking Gun reported.
The fraud was not the only legal transgression for Nakoula Basseley Nakoula. In 1997 he was charged with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, The Daily Beast reported.
Nakoula had initially distanced himself from his role on Innocence of Muslims, saying he was involved in its creation but was not the director, The Huffington Post reported. Early reports centered around a man named Sam Bacile, whose existence was later brought into doubt.
Law enforcement officials later identified Nakoula, whom the Daily Mail referred to as a “meth-making federal informer” as the man behind the film and cell phones for Bacile and Nakoula were traced to the same address.
Innocence of Muslims, which mocks the prophet Muhammad and the Islamic religion, has been cited for inciting violence against the US overseas, with an attack on the US embassy in Libya leaving ambassador Chris Stevens dead.
The Daily Mail figured that with Nakoula Basseley Nakoula being released from prison in September 2010 and moving into a halfway house where he remained on and off until June 2011, much or all of the script for Innocence of Muslims would have been written while he was either in prison or the halfway house.
Nakoula Basseley Nakoula now has police protection at his Cerritos, California, home for fear of retaliation.