On April 22, Kanagawa Prefectural Police's Hotogaya Station referred a 44-year-old ex-projectionist to prosecutors for selling film frames of the trailer of K-ON! The Movie on an internet auction site between August and October 2011. He is accused of the crime of professional embezzlement and infringement of the Copyright Law. The movie was released in Japan on December 3, 2011.
According to the police, the suspect cut five frames out from the actual trailer reel in August 2011 at the theater in Hakodate-city he used to work at the time. Then he put four frames of them up for auction on an internet auction site and sold them the successful bidder for 50,000 yen (about US$487). Actually, the bidder was Shochiku, the distribution company of the film. After the company consulted with the evidence, the police successfully found the suspect. He has already admitted the charge and said,
"Since they were valuable collectors items, I thought I could make a lot of money." He was fired from the
theater in January this year.
"K-ON! The Movie" DVD jacket
K-ON! image © Kakifly, Houbunsha/Sakura High Light Music Club