Filmmaker Nakoula B. Nakoula Arrested for Supervised Release Violation

Update: Another "real name" for Nakoula Bassely Nakoula. According to KPPC, he told the judge today his real name is Mark Basseley Youseff. The charges are still under seal.

Youseff, who revealed that he also goes by the aliases Nakoula Basseley Nakoula and Sam Bacile, was accused of 8 allegations of probation violation. No date has been set for his next hearing.

Update: Nakoula was ordered detained pending the final determination of supervised release revocation proceedings.

The judge cited a "lengthy pattern of deception," including making false statements to probation officials. "The court has a lack of trust in the defendant at this time," Judge Suzanne H. Segal said, adding that he posed "some danger to the community."

Calfornia film maker Nakoula Basseley Nakoulah was arrested today on a petition to revoke his supervised release. He has an appearance this afternoon in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles.


A "Probation Form 12" was filed today. Last week, attorney Steven A. Seidman filed an entry of appearance for Nakoula, replacing James Henderson, the attorney who represented Nakoula during the original criminal case.

Presentence Report and Recommendation for Revocation of Probation or Supervised Release. A Probation Officer may initiate a revocation proceeding by the Submission of a Form 12 to the Court that placed the defendant on probation or supervised release. If the Court decides that a hearing is appropriate, it shall notify the parties and the Probation Officer. The Probation Officer shall have no further contact with the Court with respect to the Form 12 prior to the hearing on the violation.

If, after a hearing, the defendant is found to have violated the terms of probation or supervised release, the Probation Officer shall prepare a dispositional report and recommendation. At least 7 days before the date set for sentencing after the Court has revoked a term of probation or supervised release, the Probation Officer shall disclose a copy of a dispositional report and recommendation to defense counsel (or to a pro se defendant) and to the attorney for the government, and shall lodge a copy with the sentencing Judge.

The pertinent details of his criminal case and supervised release are here. Among the terms of his supervised release:

7. Defendant shall not possess or use a device with access to any online service at any location without the prior approval of the Probation Officer. This includes access through any Internet Service Provider ("ISP"), bulletin board system, or any public or private computer network system. Further, defendant shall not have another individual access the Internet on defendant's behalf to obtain files or information that defendant is restricted from accessing personally, or accept restricted files or information from another person;

8. Defendant shall use only those computers, computer related devices, screen/user names, passwords, e-mail accounts, and ISPs approved by the Probation Officer. Computer and computer -related devices include, but are not limited to, personal computers, personal data assistants (PDAs), Internet appliances, electronic games, and cellular telephones, as well as peripheral equipment, that can access, or can be modified to access, the Internet, electronic bulletin boards, other computers, or similar media. Defendant shall use any approved computers only within the scope of his employment. Defendant shall not access a computer for any other purpose. Defendant shall immediately report to the Probation Officer any changes in defendant's employment affecting defendant's access and/or use of computers or the Internet, including e-mail;

9. All computers, computer-related devices, computer storage media, and peripheral equipment used by defendant shall be subject to search and seizure, and subject to the installation of search and/or monitoring software and/or hardware, including unannounced seizure for the purpose of search. Defendant shall not add, remove upgrade, update, reinstall, repair, or otherwise modify the hardware or software on any computers, computer related devices, or peripheral equipment without the prior approval of the Probation Officer, nor shall defendant hide or encrypt files or data. Further, defendant shall, as requested by the Probation Officer, provide all billing records, including telephone, cable, Internet, satellite, and similar records;


The defendant shall maintain one personal checking account. All of defendant’s income, “monetary gains,” or other pecuniary proceeds shall be deposited into this account, which shall be used for payment of all personal expenses. Records of all other bank accounts, including any business accounts, shall be disclosed to the Probation Officer upon request.

The defendant shall not transfer, sell, give away, or otherwise convey any asset with a fair market value in excess of $500 without approval of the Probation Officer until all financial obligations imposed by the Court have been satisfied in full.

When sentenced, Nakoulah signed a form that said:

Upon a finding of violation of probation or supervised release, I understand that the court may (1) revoke supervision, (2) extend the term of supervision, and/or (3) modify the conditions of supervision. These conditions have been read to me. I fully understand the conditions and have been provided a copy of them.

This is not surprising. As I wrote earlier:

Reading through the terms of probation, it's hard to believe Nakoula didn't commit some violation, even if only technical. While he's been released today, I won't be surprised if its just temporary, while the feds put a case together for violation of supervised release. If they do, it probably won't be public until after he's arrested or turns himself in and makes his first appearance.

Supervised release replaced parole in the federal system in 1986. There is no parole. Instead, when inmates are released, they are placed on supervised release. The Probation Department supervises both those on probation and supervised release.

Nakoula was originally sentenced to 21 months in prison, to be followed by 6 months in a half-way house and then 5 years of supervised release. Records from the Bureau of Prisons show he was released in June, 2011. He was also ordered to pay $794,700.57, in restitution.

[T]he defendant is hereby committed on count 1 of the Indictment to the custody of the Bureau of Prisons to be imprisoned for a term of: TWENTY-ONE (21) MONTHS

....Upon release from imprisonment, the defendant shall be placed on supervised release for a term of five (5) years, under the following terms and conditions:

.... 2. The defendant shall reside for a period of six (6) months in a community corrections center (community corrections component), as directed by the Probation Officer, and shall observe the rules of that facility.

Will he get bail? He was detained pending trial in the criminal case because the Government alleged he was an serious flight risk. He didn't contest the motion. In its order of pre-trial detention, the court found he had extensive foreign ties and had sent large amounts of money abroad.

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  • Display: Sort:
    Not much of a surprise. (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by scribe on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 07:18:59 PM EST
    Not even the timing - they waited until after Obama went to the UN to sing paeans to Free Speech and how we protect it, even when it's really, really repugnant.

    I'll suspect that the movie camera used to make the movie will likely suffice as an electronic device, for him to have violated his supervised release.

    he may have admitted in a radio interview (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 07:54:06 PM EST
    that he uploaded the film's trailer to You Tube.

    ''I am the one who leaked the 14 minutes and put it on the internet and I am thinking about releasing the full film. Nobody manipulated my film,'' he told Radio Sawa, a US government station that broadcasts in Arabic.

    Don't some states (none / 0) (#3)
    by CoralGables on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 08:36:18 PM EST
    have no bail for probation violations?

    this is in federal court (none / 0) (#4)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 10:01:17 PM EST
    you can get bail pending a probation or supervised release revocation in federal court:

    Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 32.1 governs the revocation and modification of probation and supervised release. The Rule empowers a magistrate judge to detain or release a person under 18 U.S.C. § 3143(a), pending further proceedings. The Rule further establishes a presumption in favor of detention, rebuttable only upon a showing of clear and convincing evidence that the defendant is not likely to flee or pose a danger to any other person or the community. Fed.R.Crim.P. 32.1(a)(6). The burden of proof rests with the defendant. Id.

    And then (none / 0) (#6)
    by lentinel on Fri Sep 28, 2012 at 03:49:58 AM EST
    there's Bradley Manning.

    looks more like (none / 0) (#15)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Sep 29, 2012 at 09:05:42 AM EST
    he was using the internet to scam people and the government set down rules to keep him from doing that anymore.  He didn't follow the rules he agreed to and now he is in trouble.  It has nothing to do with free speech.

    I find this odd (none / 0) (#5)
    by Peter G on Thu Sep 27, 2012 at 11:55:44 PM EST
    Although I have to assume they were discussed openly in the court proceeding this afternoon, the particular charges of supervision violation are not available on the court's public docket.

    Don't think I would (none / 0) (#7)
    by fishcamp on Fri Sep 28, 2012 at 06:24:16 AM EST
    call that piece of crap a film.

    Labeling him a Filmmaker (none / 0) (#14)
    by CoralGables on Fri Sep 28, 2012 at 09:05:07 AM EST
    which has been done by many media outlets seems like a bit of a reach, as it would likely place the director of "Charlie Bit My Finger Again" in the same class as Cecil B. DeMille.