Thursday, 24 April 2008

Association suspends rogue photographer

POLICE in two counties have now been informed of the business practices of rogue West Somerset photographer Mark Stothard.
Mr Stothard, aged 40, who lives with his wife Sarah Masters off Seaward Way, Minehead, trades as Mark The Photographer and also uses a number of other business names.
They include South West Debt Recovery, as well as several internet-based businesses, including,, and
The Post complained to Avon and Somerset Constabulary about Mr Stothard’s business conduct and is compiling a comprehensive dossier of information to pass to detectives.
Now, Mr Stothard has also been reported to police in Sussex, where he traded before moving to Somerset about four years ago and first living and working near Yeovil, before relocating to Timberscombe.
He has now also had his membership of the British Press Photographers’ Association suspended - becoming only the second photographer in its history to be suspended – following inquiries into the copyright of pictures he has been using on his websites and on his BPPA gallery.
Many of the photographs were of international politicians and celebrities, such as France President Nicolas Sarkozy, Germany’s Chancellor Angela Merkel, and footballer David Beckham, as well as rally cars competing in Spain and New Zealand.
However, the BPPA has received information that many of the photographs were actually taken from the European Press Agency, Reuters, and other organisations.
As word of The Post’s investigation into Mr Stothard has spread, the newspaper has been inundated with telephone calls and emails from people around the country claiming to have outstanding debts for work they carried out on his behalf.
Some of the information relates to businesses he ran in Hailsham, Sussex, before he was made bankrupt in 2005.
They include Confused Media, High Quality Film Scanning, and a wedding photography business which used advertising in glossy magazines.

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