Reuters is reporting that Google has complied with the requests of Brazilian authorities to pull a political attack video from YouTube. Earlier this week Judge Flavio Peren ordered the company to pull the clip on the grounds that it slandered mayoral candidate Alcides Bernal. Google refused, leading to the arrest yesterday of Fabio José Silva Coelho, Google's president of operations in Brazil. Coelho was released after questioning.
In an emailed statement to Reuters, the executive said that "Despite this, we will continue with our global campaign for liberty of expression, not just because it is a prerequisite for a free society but also because more information generally means more schools, more power, more economic opportunities and more liberty for people." Under Brazil's 1965 Electoral Code, ads that personally attack candidates are banned.
Google initially appealed the removal order by Judge Peren, but acquiesced after its attempts were unsuccessful. In his statement to Reuters, Coelho went on to say that "We are profoundly disappointed to not have the opportunity of openly debating our arguments in the electoral justice system that the videos were legitimate manifestations of the freedom of expression and should continue (to be) available in Brazil."