George Clooney's Mom Cops Won't Touch My Boy!

3/16/2012 9:15 AM PDT

Call her an idealist -- but moments before George Clooney was handcuffed in D.C. this morning, his mother Nina refused to believe he'd be arrested for leading a massive protest.

Nina was watching as George led the protest outside the Sudanese Embassy today -- and when a photog asked if she thought the actor might get locked up ... as people suspected he would ... Nina replied with an enthusiastic, "NO!"

But she wasn't worried either way -- claiming, "If he does ... he's a big boy."

And like any supportive mother -- Nina added, "I'm extremely proud of him."