Sacha Baron Cohen sued $110m over 'terrorist' label
Published: 10th Dec 2009 09:38:33
Comedian Sacha Baron Cohen is facing a $110m (£67.5m) libel action from a Palestinian man who says the film Bruno wrongly branded him a terrorist.
Shopkeeper Ayman Abu Aita was interviewed for the 2009 comedy and captioned as a member of militant group al-Aqsa Martyrs' Brigade.
He is also suing US talk show host David Letterman after he and Cohen discussed meeting a "terrorist".
Film financers Universal Studios and Letterman's lawyers have not commented.
In legal papers filed in Washington DC, Bethlehem businessman Mr Abu Aita's lawyer said he was a Christian and "a peace-loving person who abhors violence".
He added that before the film he "enjoyed a good reputation for honesty and a peaceable nature" in the community, which had been compromised.
Any involvement in militant activities and organisations were "utterly false and untrue", his lawyer stated.
He added that Mr Abu Aita was never given a release form to sign ahead of his appearance in the film, and added that Baron Cohen had "made millions" through it.
In his Letterman appearance, the star said he had feared for his safety when he interviewed Mr Abu Aita at a secret location of his choosing.
Mr Abu Aita claims that the meeting took place at a hotel chosen by the film's production staff.
The excerpt of the film was then shown on the popular US TV show.
A legal hearing about Mr Abu Aita's complaint is expected to be heard next month.
Baron Cohen faced a number of legal actions over his previous film, the 2006 comedy Borat, from people who felt they were misrepresented or were not made aware of the film's satirical nature.
A number of cases in the US were dismissed last year.
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Harvard CitationBBC News, 2009. Sacha Baron Cohen sued $110m over 'terrorist' label [Online] (Updated 10th Dec 2009)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1911/Sacha-Baron-Cohen-sued-110m-over-terrorist-label [Accessed 21st Apr 2014]
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With the doors to its brand new £1million training centre officially open, one of the UK's leading apprentice training providers, Bristol based S&B Automotive Academy, is showcasing its world-class facilities by launching a series of foreign student exchanges for the first time in its 41-year history. To get a flavour of what life is like as an apprentice in the UK, the Academy hosted 16 apprentice engineers and bus drivers from the G9 Automotive College in Hamburg, Germany, as part of a Europe-wide vocational training initiative called the ‘Leonardo Programme’ with support from the European Social Fund. In a reciprocal arrangement, S&B will be sending nine apprentices to Germany during February 2012 so that they can get an appreciation of life in the automotive industry on the Continent. A further three German exchange groups are being planned for next year. Designed to assist the development of vocational skills and training across Europe, including work placements for trainees, the Leonardo Programme has a budget of €1.75bn, which is helping to encourage UK organisations to work with their counterparts abroad. In what is expected to be another challenging year for employers in the UK automotive sector, S&B’s Chief Executive, Jon Winter, claims that the exchange initiative will bring many benefits to the Academy and its apprentices: “In a world of global automotive brands, it’s important for our learners to understand the international context of the industry they have chosen to make their career. This new exchange programme will enable apprentices and Academy staff alike to achieve a better understanding of the challenges and opportunities within the automotive arena in Europe. With the Academy’s influence also extending to the USA and Asia, there’s every possibility that this initiative could move further afield in the future.” Continued Winter: “The need for skilled technicians across the world is on the increase and we actively encourage our apprentices to look at broader horizons during their training. Many of them have already learned the phrase ‘Vorsprung durch Gelehrtheit’, quite simply, ‘Advancement through learning.” In the 2010/11 academic year, S&B doubled the number of successful Apprenticeships over the previous year with some 350 apprentices graduating from the Academy. At the same time, achievement levels reached an all-time high with an overall success rate of 85%. For those learners on the Advanced Apprenticeship three-year programme, success rates were even higher, at over 98%. PHOTO CAPTION: As part of their exchange visit, S&B Automotive Academy arranged for the German apprentices to visit Hampshire bus operator, Bluestar, at its Barton Park depot. The students are pictured with S&B’s Andy West (3rd right) and Steve Prewett, Bluestar’s Area Engineering Manager (2nd right). Ends http://www.sandbaa.com
Luke Donald finished second at the RBC Heritage as Matt Kuchar's final-round 64 earned victory in South Carolina.