The attachment of semiconducting nanoparticles to carbon nanotubes is one of the most challenging subjects in nanotechnology. Successful high coverage attachment and control over the charge transfer mechanism and photo-current generation opens a wide field of new applications such as highly effective solar cells and fibre-enhanced polymers. In this work we study the charge transfer in individual double-wall carbon nanotubes highly covered with uniform ZnO nanoparticles. The synthetic colloidal procedure was chosen to avoid long-chained ligands at the nanoparticle-nanotube interface. The resulting composite material was used as conductive channel in a field effect transistor device and the electrical photo-response was analysed under various conditions. By means of the transfer characteristics we could elucidate the mechanism of charge transfer from non-covalently attached semiconducting nanoparticles to carbon nanotubes. The role of positive charges remaining on the nanoparticles is discussed in terms of a gating effect.