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There will always be Harry Potter fans looking for wands to call their own and attire to pronounce which Hogwarts house they lay claim on. One former Warner Bros. studio employee will now spend 18 months in a UK prison due to his exploitation of merchandise such as this from the popular film series!
On Friday, 35-year-old Adam Hill was sentenced to jail time, suspension from Warner Bros. Studios, and 250 hours of unpaid work at St. Albans Crown Court for stealing $41,000 worth of Harry Potter merchandise and selling over 1,040 items of wands, ties, badges, key rings and such on his personal eBay account. Hill stole items from the Warner Bros stockroom while he was an employee at Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden Hertfordshire, England.
He was discovered in March 2018 after his work collaegues started noticing merchandise appearing and disappearing from under his desk and later told their superiors. The thefts dated back from December 2017, per a report from Crown Prosecution Service. An internal investigation followed, where police found 12 packages of Harry Potter merchandise packaged and ready to ship in his car and his eBay operation stocked with the stolen items and boxes in his home.
On November 28, Adam Hill pleaded guilty to the thefts and has now been sentenced to jail time. The thefts follow a recent news story about a former Disney employee also stealing Walt Disney World props and selling it to NBA player, Robin Lopez. On a lighter note, Jason Isaacs totally tried to nab a copy of The Daily Prophet whilst on set to play Lucius Malfoy, but was “caught” by director David Yates.
There were apparently “thousands” on set, so it wasn’t a huge deal, but when people such as Adam Hill have sold merch, no wonder he was turned away. The late Alan Rickman was supposedly the real slick Rick on set, stealing away the Gringotts coins on the first day on the movie.
Crazy enough, it’s been almost a decade since the first Harry Potter series of films concluded. The cast of Hogwarts students including Emma Watson, Tom Felton, Evanna Lynch, Bonnie Wright, and Matthew Lewis recently had a bit of a reunion. The interest in the series has only grown since Deathly Hallows Part 2 wrapped, especially considering a first edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone was recently auctioned off for $50,000.
Up next for the franchise is the third Fantastic Beasts movie starring Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander. The movie is expected to begin shooting soon ahead of its November 12, 2021 release date after some script reworking was done.
In the meantime, if you bought some Harry Potter merchandise on eBay last year, it could totally be stolen!