Sweden's HAMMERFALL have been cheated out of their entire earnings from their U.S. tour last year, including all the merchandising money — to the tune of 250,000 Swedish kronor (approximately $32,000)."A person has stolen the money from the five-week-long tour, plus the money from the sales of t-shirts and other merchandise," HAMMERFALL guitarist Oscar Dronjak told the Swedish daily newspaper Aftonbladet. Added vocalist Joacim Cans, "It took us several months to find this out. In addition, he stole the drums, the amplifiers, and all the other rental equipment [used during the tour]." HAMMERFALL's record company, Nuclear Blast Records, had originally recommended this person, who was part of the tour entourage. "He came with good references, but he had an extreme split personality," Oscar said. "All of a sudden, he would become enraged [for no apparent reason]." When asked if they have reported this theft to the police, Joacim said, "That's up to our German management to handle. The police report has to be filed in the U.S. To everyone's surprise, the man recently showed up again [after not being seen for a while]. But he's spent all the money [he stole]. According to the booking agency [that was responsible for arranging the tour], he's promised to pay it back."
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