Feds Seize Lennon’s Fingerprints

Almost 30 years after John Lennon’s murder and only days before his 70th birthday, the FBI has snatched the former Beatle’s fingerprints from a New York memorabilia shop.

The fingerprints date back to 1976 when Lennon applied for U.S. citizenship and was fingerprinted at the NYC police station on May 8, 1976, according to the New York Times which reports the fingerprint card also includes Lennon’s signature and lists his name as “John Winston Ono Lennon.”

Photo: AP Photo

The fingerprint card surfaced at a NYC memorabilia shop called “Gotta Have It!,” and was going to be auctioned along with more than 800 other items in an event timed to coincide with Lennon’s Oct. 9 birthday. According to the Times, the F.B.I. served the shop with a subpoena on Oct. 6 and seized the card after “an hour-long standoff involving cell phone calls, faxes and meetings with an agent in a parked car” outside the building.

While no one seems to be sure as to how the fingerprint card ended up in the shop, there are also questions as to why the federal government is even interested in Lennon’s prints. Shop co-owner Peter Siegel told the Times that in the past few days he had fielded questions, not only from the F.B.I., but also Homeland Security and a United States attorney.

However, all that interest in the prints may be about property ownership and how the card ended up at the shop. The Times quotes F.B.I. representative James Margolin as saying there is an “investigation into how that item came to be up for auction.”

Siegel has said the card was being sold on behalf of a private collector identified only as “a former concert promoter” who purchased it at a Beatles convention a couple years ago.

Click here to read the complete New York Times article.