Brazil judge orders arrest of Google president

Associated Press Modified: September 25, 2012 at 8:31 pm •  Published: September 25, 2012

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — A Brazilian judge ordered the arrest of the head of Google's operations in Brazil for failure to remove YouTube videos that attacked a mayoral candidate, which runs counter to the South American nation's strict pre-vote electoral laws.

Google said in a Tuesday statement that it rejected the decision by Judge Flavio Peren of Mato Grosso do Sul state, which also included an order to remove the two videos in question and a statewide, 24-hour suspension of Google and You Tube.

Police said they had not received an order to arrest Fabio Jose Silva Coelho. It was not clear if any suspension of Google's services occurred in Mato Grosso do Sul state. After hours calls to the court were not returned.

"Google is appealing the decision that ordered the removal of the YouTube video because, in being a platform, Google is not responsible for the content posted on its site," the company said in an emailed statement from Sao Paulo.

A spokesman said the company would not make any further statement on the case.

The videos on YouTube make incendiary comments about an alleged paternity suit aimed at Alcides Bernal, who is running for mayor of the city of Campo Grande. Nationwide municipal elections will be held Oct. 7. It was not possible to reach Bernal for comment, or verify if any paternity lawsuits had been leveled against him.