One of the more enduring images to come out of Sacha Baron Cohen’s 2006 film Borat! Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan was its star donning a lime green “mankini” that just barely covers up his formidable package. Wearing one in public was a funny prank 10 years ago; wearing one nowadays is decidedly less so, but no one should be monetarily punished for being unfunny.
A group of Czech tourists in Kazakhstan, from which the film’s subject hails, were recently arrested in the city of Astana for wearing matching mankinis and Borat-style wigs. As punishment, they were charged $67 each for “minor hooliganism,” which feels like an apt description of their actions.
After the BBC reported on it, however, Cohen swooped to the rescue, promising to pay their fines if they could adequately prove they were the mankini-wearers. He even created a Gmail account—firstname.lastname@example.org—that we’re sure is filled with some extremely annoying messages about now.
Here’s the Facebook post he put up announcing his intention to help the goofballs.