LATEST: A British man was convicted at London's Southwark Crown Court yesterday (13JUL06) of trying to sell stolen Beatles recordings.
NIGEL OLIVER, 55, faced charges of handling stolen goods and seeking to obtain GBP250,000 ($450,000) for the tapes dating back to 1969, when the STRAWBERRY FIELDS FOREVER icons laid down tracks for their LET IT BE album.
The 504 tapes make up 80 hours of material, including more than 200 cover versions, and were in the possession of two unknown Amsterdam, Netherlands, men before a 2003 Dutch police raid recovered them. Oliver acted as a middle man in the deal they were brokering.
Neil Aspinall, who manages The Beatles' Apple Corps label, told the court, "These tapes have a huge commercial value. There's lots of very unknown stuff and music they wouldn't have recorded in a normal session.
"For example, they covered over 200 songs on these tapes. Songs of the day, such as Bob Dylan."
Oliver, who was found unfit to enter a plea, will return to court for sentencing.