Second man faces charges in wake of ring thefts
Police have arrested and charged a second man in relation to the $360 million movie trilogy The Lord Of The Rings, including the theft of two swords from the project.
Detective Constable Tony Darroch said a 39-year-old man was arrested in Auckland on Thursday by Wellington detectives on four charges of theft. He was due to appear in Auckland District Court on Friday.
Mr Darroch said exhibits in the case included design concepts, images and props, including two swords, from the Peter Jackson-directed project.
In June the trilogy's producers stopped United States Internet auctioneers Ebay from auctioning a sword claimed to be from the films. Producer Barrie Osborne said at the time it believed the sword was a fake, as none had been been given away, sold or lost.
The arrest is the second in Operation Piece, a police investigation under way since May, after approaches from Jackson's Wellington-based Three Foot Six film company. Footage from the film was offered for sale on the Internet.
Last month a 36-year-old man was arrested in Auckland, charged with making a VHS copy of film footage, money laundering, fraudulently dealing with a film and theft as a servant of two video cassettes.
The man, whose name is suppressed, pleaded guilty last week to one charge of receiving three videotapes and another charge of dealing in a reproduced document. Three other charges were withdrawn. The man will be sentenced next month.
Mr Darroch said it was possible a third arrest would be made today.
21 July 2000
Another case arising from "Rings"
A second man has appeared in the Auckland District Court charged with offences relating to the film set of Lord of the Rings.
The 39-year-old company director, who has interim name suppression, faces four charges of theft between July 19th last year and June 24th this year.
He is charged with stealing a number of scripts, props, VHS cassettes and costume designs from the film company totalling
a value in excess of $1500.
The accused was released on bail with a number of conditions and will appear in court again on August 4th.
Police say another man has been arrested in connection with money laundering charges relating to the Lord of the Rings production.
Earlier this month another Auckland man pleaded guilty to charges relating to selling advance footage from the production being filmed in Wellington.
21st July 2000
Third charge over "Lord of the Rings"
A third man charged in relation to theft and onselling videos from the "Lord of the Rings" film set appeared in court on Friday.
The 39-year-old, who has name suppression, has been charged with money laundering in relation to two other arrests.
Earlier this month an Auckland man pleaded guilty to selling advanced footage from the production.
That lead to a second Auckland man, 39, being charged on Thursday with theft from the film set.
The third man has been remanded on bail without entering a plea to the money laundering charge and is due back in court in a fortnight.
21st July 2000