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Ex-guard took Rings film set photos

; Quelle: The Evening Post

A former security guard on The Lord Of The Rings film set took 500 photographs of scenes he was supposed to stop other people recording.

In Wellington District Court yesterday, production company Three Foot Six Ltd won civil proceedings to have the photographs and negatives given to it.

Police seized the photographs and negatives from Brian McLennan, who'd been living in an Upper Hutt caravan park. He worked as a security guard for Three Foot Six since November and signed a confidentiality agreement as part of his job.

It's understood he took photos of the set, actors and costumes.

Police allege it's not the only thing McLennan took. He faces a criminal charge of theft as a servant, on which he is due to appear in Invercargill District Court early next month.

The photographs were discovered during a police search relating to the criminal charge. They were kept as evidence of where McLennan had been.

Although named as a party to the civil action, McLennan wasn't represented in court yesterday and didn't oppose Three Foot Six having his photographs.

Lawyer for the film maker Lloyd Davies said the photographs were taken in breach of the confidentiality agreement McLennan signed, and standard employment conditions.

Three Foot Six's copyright would be breached if the photographs weren't given to it, he said.

For police, Hamish Woods said police wanted to keep the photographs as evidence till the criminal case against McLennan was over. Judge David Ongley tagged his order with that condition.

* Meanwhile, a 39-year-old company director appeared in Auckland District Court yesterday in connection with the $360 million film project.

He was charged with stealing items worth more than $1500 from the set.

The man was remanded on bail until August 4, when he will appear for a pre-depositions hearing.

He was charged with stealing two Lord Of The Rings scripts worth more than $300, 12 VHS tapes worth more than $300, prop swords worth a total of $600, and various colour photographs of approved costume and armour conceptual designs worth more than $300.

The offences were said to have occurred between July 19, 1999, and June 24 this year.

Also in Auckland yesterday, a 38-year-old businessman was arrested and charged with money laundering.


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