141 arrested in stolen iPhone, iPad sting in New York

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
A recent New York Police Department sting, in which undercover officers offered stolen iPhone 4 and iPad 2 units, netted a total of 141 arrests.



The officers clearly stated to New York City merchants that the Apple devices were stolen before they agreed to prices between $50 and $200, NYPD spokesman Paul Browne told the New York Post. Clerks and workers at a number of businesses, including barbershops, supermarkets, and pawn shops, were arrested in the sting.



"That's our intention, to reduce the places where people who steal these things can go and sell them," NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly reportedly said. "If someone is offering you an iPad for way below market value, you have to realize that it's most likely stolen."



Most arrests came from Brooklyn, where 42 people were charged. Another 41 were arrested in Manhattan, 31 in the Bronx, 21 in Queens, and 6 on Staten Island.



The businesses were targeted after the police spoke with prisoners already in custody. Those prisoners shared locations where they were selling stolen goods.



Police also cautioned that civilians should avoid showing off their smartphone in public. One source told the Post that "walking around with a cellphone is like walking around with a $500 bill," inviting theft.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 36
    They would have had zero arrests if they were peddling Playbooks.
  • Reply 2 of 36
    Wut...
  • Reply 3 of 36
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by katastroff View Post


    They would have had zero arrests if they were peddling Playbooks.



    I think I'd rather be arrested for stealing an iPad than not be arrested for stealing a PlayBook.
  • Reply 4 of 36
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,868member
    Isn't this just entrapment? They would be better off looking for and catching thieves rather that people that buy stolen goods at bargain prices when they are offered them, that would be half of the population I'd imagine. Although I can see going after fences is a good idea if this is all they were doing. I guess they may even get names of regular thieves in plea bargains. Ok I retract maybe a good idea ...
  • Reply 5 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Clerks and workers at a number of businesses, including barbershops, supermarkets, and pawn shops, were arrested in the sting.



    Pawn Shops I understand, but barbershops and supermarkets? How do those fall under the category of:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    ...places where people who steal these things can go and sell them...



    I suspect there were a handful of pawn shop workers in those 141 arrests, but the majority were minimum-wage stock boys at grocery stores who thought they were getting a sweet deal on an iPad or iPhone. Arresting them does nothing to diminish the number of places where stolen goods can be sold, because these are not places where iPads and iPhones are sold. These people would have likely never bought the stolen goods had the undercover officer not approached them with such a great deal, and they sure weren't going to turn around and resell the stolen goods in their stores.
  • Reply 6 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post


    Police also cautioned that civilians should avoid showing off their smartphone in public. One source told the Post that "walking around with a cellphone is like walking around with a $500 bill," inviting theft.



    That's sad that police are basically telling everyone in NYC that using your smart phone in public is begging to be robbed. Glad I live in a nice quiet neighborhood.
  • Reply 7 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techguy911 View Post


    That's sad that police are basically telling everyone in NYC that using your smart phone in public is begging to be robbed. Glad I live in a nice quiet neighborhood.



    You also shouldn't drive, because it's like going around town with $25,000 in a briefcase, just asking to be car-jacked. Shame on you.
  • Reply 8 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by digitalclips View Post


    Isn't this just entrapment? They would be better off looking for and catching thieves rather that people that buy stolen goods at bargain prices when they are offered them, that would be half of the population I'd imagine. Although I can see going after fences is a good idea if this is all they were doing. I guess they may even get names of regular thieves in plea bargains. Ok I retract maybe a good idea ...



    It does fit the description of entrapment. All depends on if a NYC judge will agree.
  • Reply 9 of 36
    I can't see how this is anything but entrapment. Hey there minimum wage worker in the most expensive city in the USA, have I got deal for you! This reeks of injustice.
  • Reply 10 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techguy911 View Post


    It does fit the description of entrapment. All depends on if a NYC judge will agree.



    It's not entrapment. The cops clearly stated they were about to commit a crime. The buyers chose to do so of their own free will, and understood they were commiting said crime.



    I only have issue with the bait.



    When some crackhead stops me on a sidewalk to sell my a mountainbike for 20$ for his next shot, I decline. (it's happened)



    If he'd offer me an iPhone..... well....



    Anyway, these were known "recyclers" they were going after.
  • Reply 11 of 36
    lilgto64lilgto64 Posts: 1,147member
    meanwhile - it is hard to sell "Free" Android devices.



    Here - want to buy this stolen merchandise - that clearly has a resale value.



    Hmm - well, <b>I</b> didn't steal it - so it must be okay.



    Were the products intact stolen? if not then the undercover agents were lying, if so then the agents should be arrested



    As to entrapment - it seems to me that there is a difference between me actively going out and seeking something - whether it be drugs, or sex, or stolen goods - and someone approaching me and making the offer.



    Perhaps not enough of a difference in terms of whether or not I committed a crime or not - but certainly in terms of whether I set out with intent to commit the crime. Sort of like the difference between homicide and involuntary manslaughter.



    In this particular case - it may be that these individuals were already suspected or under some sort of surveillance - not that the undercover agents just wandered around looking for people to pick on.
  • Reply 12 of 36
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member
    This is not entrapment.



    If somebody offers to sell you something that is stated to be stolen and you accept, then you are a filthy criminal and you are committing a crime.



    The cops are smart too. If they'd have offered stolen Android phones instead, they wouldn't have been able to make many arrests as they would have been laughed out of the store and possibly beaten up for even suggesting such a stupid thing.
  • Reply 13 of 36
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member
    Kelly said undercover officers tried to make 600 sales; 141 people took the bait and were arrested



    That's a high ratio of scumbags out of 600. Those 141 criminals deserve to be behind bars.
  • Reply 14 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Cory Bauer View Post


    Pawn Shops I understand, but barbershops and supermarkets? How do those fall under the category of:







    I suspect there were a handful of pawn shop workers in those 141 arrests, but the majority were minimum-wage stock boys at grocery stores who thought they were getting a sweet deal on an iPad or iPhone. Arresting them does nothing to diminish the number of places where stolen goods can be sold, because these are not places where iPads and iPhones are sold. These people would have likely never boughten the stolen goods had the undercover officer not approached them with such a great deal, and they sure weren't going to turn around and resell the stolen goods in their stores.



    Everytime I go on Fridays to get my haircut in Spanish Harlem someone almost always walks in selling something ie. the Asian woman selling the counterfeit DVD's and they even walk rightup to you in the restuarant while you are eating and pull out the bogus DVDs and dudes always walk in selling something stolen... But if you live a decent area of course u won't see this but in he urban areas in NYC yes it happens
  • Reply 15 of 36
    galbigalbi Posts: 968member
    Waste of taxpayers money.



    Go after more important things than Apple stuff.
  • Reply 16 of 36
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Galbi View Post


    Go after more important things than Apple stuff.



    What could possibly be more important than Apple stuff?



    iPhones and iPads are the most lucrative items around, even for thieves.
  • Reply 17 of 36
    galbigalbi Posts: 968member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Apple ][ View Post


    What could possibly be more important than Apple stuff?



    iPhones and iPads are the most lucrative items around, even for thieves.



    Plenty of stuff.



    Drugs are the first things that comes to my mind.



    Dont be so naive.
  • Reply 18 of 36
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 8,360member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Galbi View Post


    Plenty of stuff.



    Drugs are the first things that comes to my mind.



    Dont be so naive.



    Now, drugs is definitely a waste of taxdollars to go after, especially weed.



    There's a reason why drugs like weed is decriminalized in NY and buying stolen items is not.



    Whether you like it or not, Apple items are highly sought after and it makes perfect sense to go after criminals dealing in such stolen items.
  • Reply 19 of 36
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by techguy911 View Post


    It does fit the description of entrapment. All depends on if a NYC judge will agree.



    Not entrapment if they were told by the police that they were buying stolen property. Law abiding folk would have just said "no thanks". These people were thieves as well.
  • Reply 20 of 36
    They work hard for the money. If you are cut off from success through legal means, you will use illegal means. Highly negotiable items should never be waved around in public places. NY city is one place where there are more dishonest people than honest ones. I couldn't buy a knock off Gucci purse any where near where I live, in NY on trips, I trip over them.
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