Sun, Jul 25, 2004 - Page 6 News List

Paparazzo calls cops on Diana's ex-lover

THE GUARDIAN , LONDON

The photographer who snared James Hewitt -- a former lover of Princess Diana -- in a set of pictures that showed him enjoying a day of excess says he stumbled across the former major while he was out for the afternoon.

The alleged lucky break is likely to earn freelance paparazzo Dennis Gill a small fortune.

Gill, who makes his living from "doing pictures of celebrities coming out of clubs," defended his decision to call the police about the man the tabloids have called a cad and "royal love rat". He called them because he believed Hewitt and his female companion, TV news presenter Alison Bell, possessed cocaine. Both spent Wednesday night in jail.

"I just came across him and decided to watch him because he was enjoying himself quite a bit," Gill said yesterday. Hewitt "was so out of it he was swinging around like a monkey."

Gill said he called local police and managed to get another two photographers in place so that the pending arrest would be shot from all angles.

"I am totally anti-drugs. I lost my brother to drugs and I am totally against it. He died of a Diazepam overdose. Yesterday would have been his birthday.

"I don't feel James Hewitt should go to jail; jail will teach him nothing. But I do hope he is found guilty, because he is guilty. I would like him to be punished, I would like to see him doing community service where he has to work with children and have to lecture them on how bad drugs are," he said.

Gill was surprised to learn that after his release from jail, Hewitt had returned to the bar Gill had tracked him to earlier. Hewitt downed a few more beers before proceeding to a clay pigeon shoot and the Duke of Marlborough's country home.

The photographer said he was off to find him again. Perhaps he could get Hewitt to punch him in the nose for another scoop.

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