* Regional court orders arrest for leaving YouTube videos up
* Second judge in 2 weeks ordering arrest over elections law
SAO PAULO, Sept 25 A regional elections court in
Brazil has ordered the arrest of the head of Google's
operations in the country after the company failed to take down
YouTube videos attacking a local mayoral candidate.
The ruling, which Google is appealing, marks the second time
in two weeks that Brazilian judges have ordered the apprehension
of executives at the search engine giant for not cooperating
with local election laws.
The legal challenges highlight broader questions about
Google's responsibility for content that third parties upload to
its websites, such as an anti-Islam video that sparked a wave of
protests and violence in the Muslim world.
A spokesman for the regional elections court in Mato Grosso
do Sul said on Tuesday that a judge had ordered the arrest of
Fabio José Silva Coelho, Google's top executive in Brazil,
unless the videos attacking a local mayoral candidate were
"Google is appealing the decision that ordered the removal
of the video on YouTube because, as a platform, Google is not
responsible for the content posted to its site," the company
said through a spokesman in Brazil.
Earlier this month an electoral court in the state of
Paraiba ordered the arrest of another senior Google executive,
Edmundo Luiz Pinto Balthazar, after the company refused to take
down a YouTube video mocking a mayoral candidate there.
Days later another judge overturned the ruling.
At the time, the company also defended in a statement its
users' rights of expression.
"Google believes that voters have a right to use the
Internet to freely express their opinions about candidates for
political office, as a form of full exercise of democracy,
especially during electoral campaigns," the company wrote.