A man who listed David Beckham and the royal family of Brunei among his clients has appeared in court on a firearms charge following a police raid on the $30 million Dotcom mansion.
Wayne Phillip Tempero, who had been head of security for Kim Dotcom at his Coatesville mansion, appeared in North Shore District Court yesterday over the unlawful possession of a semi-automatic shotgun.
Speaking outside court before his appearance, Tempero said he would fight the charges. He said the shotgun had been bought in Auckland with a licence.
Tempero, 55, has also looked after sailors Brad Butterworth and Russell Coutts, as well as Alinghi's founder, billionaire Ernesto Bertarelli during the America's Cup, and released a self-defence DVD called Stamp in 2007.
Media reports three years ago also listed England footballer David Beckham as one of his clients.
According to the Celebrity Speakers' website, Tempero has been offering self-defence programmes at workplaces. The programme reportedly provides benefits in safety as well as being "inspirational".
Tempero is due back in court next month.
Two other Dotcom associates were granted bail at a separate hearing yesterday at the court.
Judge David McNaughton granted Finn Batato and Bram van der Kolk bail. However, the judge said more submissions would need to be made on behalf of Mathias Ortmann.
It could be a week until the pair are released because the police need to check the bail addresses.
The pair have been banned from using or owning any device capable of connecting to the internet.
Batato and van der Kolk are due back in court next Thursday.
The FBI is seeking to extradite Dotcom and the trio to the US to face charges of conspiring to commit racketeering, conspiring to commit money laundering, copyright infringement, and aiding and abetting copyright infringement over the internet through the website Megaupload.
Dotcom denies the charges and had his bail application declined by Judge McNaughton yesterday.
Meanwhile, associates of Kim Dotcom say his flamboyant lifestyle of fast cars, superyachts and mansions is a carefully cultivated image which helped him earn his fortune and masked a sharp business mind.
A lavish trip to Monaco in 2001 was captured on a documentary commissioned by Dotcom which was fronted by a German TV comedian.
A former associate who organised the holiday told the Guardian that the real purpose was to create a sense of greater wealth than Dotcom had while fundraising for new businesses.
"The parties were in part advertising and PR," said the associate, who spoke on condition of anonymity. "He wanted to show how he was the biggest and greatest and how he had money. Back in 2000 he didn't have as much money as he showed the world he did."
The film Kimble Does Monaco shows his entourage on board the Golden Odyssey luxury cruiser with bikini-clad women, including Playboy model Gitta Saxx.
In one scene a group of semi-naked women is sprayed with champagne by the yacht's pool while "Captain Kim" looks on, decked out in black suit and polo neck and black and white shoes.
The flamboyance and cult of personality masked not only his intelligence, but also his background and true personality, the associate told the Guardian.
"I was close to him, but I never really knew what he was thinking about. Sometimes he was a really nice guy and at other times he was awful. But he was really good at bringing people around him and getting them to do their best for him. He was able to talk to them and motivate them to do what he wanted."
Dotcom recently said he regretted flaunting his wealth.
- APNZ, staff reporter