The suit points out that "all equipment and property used during NASA operations remains the property of NASA unless explicitly released or transferred to another party," and that NASA had no knowledge of Mitchell being given the camera.
Michell's lawyer, Donald Jacobson, disputes this. "Objects from the lunar trips to the moon were ultimately mounted and then presented to the astronauts as a gift after they had helped NASA on a mission," Jacobson said.
According to Jacobson, NASA had approved of Mitchell's ownership 40 years ago.
Mitchell was the Apollo 14 lunar module pilot during the nine-day mission that was commanded by Alan Shepard. He was the sixth man to walk on the moon.
So, did the Apollo legend deliberately pilfer the camera after returning from the moon? Has NASA lost the paperwork that would confirm Jacobson's story? Or were the rules of equipment acquisition a little hazy amidst all the excitement of manned lunar exploration in the early 1970′s?
We'll have to wait and see...