Former Astronaut Sued for Trying to Sell Stolen Space Camera

Oh sure, we've all swiped a thing or two from the office, but taking a few items from the supply closet at NASA is a far more serious offense than taking home a few pens and sticky notes.

Former astronaut Edgar Mitchell is being sued in a Miami Federal court for trying to auction off a camera used during a space mission.

Mitchell was the sixth man ever to walk on the moon, and flew as lunar module pilot on Apollo 14. It was his only trip to space. Now 80 years old Mitchell makes his living hawking autographed photos online and espousing his belief in extraterrestrial life. In 2004 he claimed that the government has a cabal of insiders that study alien bodies.

Back in March, NASA noticed that British auction house was planning of selling off a camera that had been used to capture images of the moon's surface during the Apollo 14 flight. The camera had been billed as belonging to the private collection of Mitchell, but NASA now claims that Mitchell had no right to the camera and they have no record of giving it to him.

The government has now filed suit to regain ownership of the camera.

"All equipment and property used during NASA operations remains the property of NASA unless explicitly released or transferred to another party," reads the government suit according to Reuters.

Mitchell's attorney told the newswire that the camera was presented as gift after the completion of the mission.

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Kyle Munzenrieder