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A Palestinian man who sued comedian Sacha Baron Cohen for $110 million for calling him a terrorist in his 2009 film Bruno has reached a settlement.
Ayman Abu Aita was described in the lawsuit, which was filed in Manhattan, as “a peace-loving person,” reports The New York Post. He claimed that the actor made false claims about him in Bruno, which included his picture above a caption that read “terrorist group leader, Al-Aqsa Martyrs brigade.”
Abu Aita said in his suit that he is Greek orthodox and not a member of the Mideast-based terrorist group.
Terms of the settlement were not disclosed, but Abu Aita’s attorney Joseph Peter Drennan said that the “case is settled to the mutual satisfaction.”
Abu Aita also named co-producer Jonah Hill and The Late Show host David Letterman, who showed Abu Aita’s image on his show. Baron Cohen also talked about his character’s meeting with Abu Aita with Letterman.
In Bruno, Baron Cohen, who played an outrageous Austrian fashion journalist in the film, he interviewed Abu Aita, who thought he was being interviewed about peace activists. He said that since the film came out, he has only received death threats and it damaged his reputation.
Letterman’s attorneys argued that free speech protected what Baron Cohen said about Abu Aita on his show. Baron Cohen’s attorneys said in papers last year that Abu Aita’s “name or likeness was used in a newsworthy context in a documentary-style movie that conveys matters of legitimate public interest.”