(Reuters) – Google Inc. should not have to remove an anti-Islamic film from its YouTube website because a woman complained that she was duped into performing in the film that depicted the Prophet Mohammed as a pedophile, a U.S. appeals court ruled on Monday.
In a case widely followed for its potential impact on the entertainment industry, an 11-judge panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco said an injunction prohibiting Google from broadcasting the film should be lifted.
A three-judge panel had ordered Google to remove the controversial film “Innocence of Muslims.” Billed as a trailer, it triggered anti-American sentiment among Muslims in Egypt, Libya and elsewhere in 2012.
For many Muslims, any depiction of the prophet is considered blasphemous.
Protests over the film coincided with an attack on U.S. diplomatic facilities in Benghazi that left four Americans dead, including the U.S. ambassador to Libya.