Deadly security for the Deathly Hallows

THE COPIES of the final Harry Potter novel were unloaded amid high security late on Sunday afternoon with publisher Bloomsbury and retailers taking every precaution to ensure the sales embargo is not broken. Dubai retailers said a book had never before..

By Zoe Sinclair (Staff Reporter)

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Published: Wed 18 Jul 2007, 12:21 AM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 12:11 AM

potterhad such a build up and required such security to ensure nobody deliberately, or accidently, got heir hands on a copy of the book.

Magrudys chief business development officer Jonathan MacDonald said stores had to sign agreements detailing the embargo against selling the books until 3am UAE time. The agreement details to the extent the boxes must not even be opened until 3am.

'Harry Potter is a bit of a one off,' he said. 'The books are in the warehouse. There's no extra security but it's very well looked after. The books will be distributed to stores on Friday.' Jashanmal retail marketing manager Nusrat Ebrahim said when Jashanmal's copies were transferred to the stores they would be kept sealed in back rooms with security guard's monitoring the rooms.

'The store staff will be particularly vigilant and there will be limited access to the store room,' she said. Retailers worldwide have expressed concerns it was possible some stores would break the embargo, according to media reports.

Its been reported that possibility is more likely with the last book as Bloomsbury has lost its bargaining power where it previously threatened to withhold subsequent books from any store that broke the embargo.

When the previous Potter novel, Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, was published in 2005 a Dubai store created drama when a store attendant accidently sold at least one copy of the book before the embargo was lifted.

City Times discovered and reported the blunder at the time and a store manager admitted the mistake.

Local retailers said they doubted stores would break the embargo in Dubai.

MacDonald said that while stores didnt run the risk of losing access to the sales of future Harry Potter books as had previously been the case, Bloomsbury could still withhold its other publications. 'It would significantly damage our relationship,' he said. 'JK Rowling wants children to be able to read it at the same time.'

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will be launched at 3.01am UAE time this Saturday (July 21).

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