THE man behind the anti-Islamic film that led to the violent unrest in the Middle East could be sent back to jail for violating his probation by distributing the movie.
Nakoula Basseley Nakoula, 55, has convictions for possessing drugs used to make methamphetamine and for bank fraud, a declaration of bankruptcy, demands for unpaid tax bills and at least 17 aliases including ''Kritbag Difrat'' and ''PJ Tobacco''.
Mr Nakoula, a married father of three and an Egyptian Coptic Christian, who once owned a petrol station, is believed to have worked on the script for Innocence of Muslims in a Californian jail cell.
He is on probation after serving a year of a 21-month sentence for fraud, which involved obtaining credit cards in the names of other people.
Advertisement He was banned for five years from using the internet and email without the approval of a probation officer. But, in July, a ''Sam Bacile'', believed to be Mr Nakoula, uploaded a 14-minute trailer to YouTube. The California probation unit is investigating if he breached his conditions.
Mr Nakoula was believed to be in hiding at his home near Los Angeles.
On Thursday Mr Nakoula telephoned a Coptic church leader, claiming he did not make the film.
The film was produced by a US religious group called Media for Christ and reportedly directed by a pornographer. Alan Roberts's previous work includes soft porn and hammy action with titles like Young Lady Chatterley II and Karate Cop.
Telegraph, London; Agence France-Presse
Are you simply reporting, or are you participating in this government driven smear campaign? His past is irrelevant. His ties to whatever group, meaningless. He has the right, just like Bill Maher did, to make his film, to speak his mind, however poorly. To deny him this right, to interigate him, to threaten him with jail and more importantly send this threat to all of us if we step out of line, to, for all practical purpose out him for a hitman to kill, these things are an affront to the freedom of every man.