Band of thieves swipe $13K in iPhones from busy Apple store

Posted:
in General Discussion edited October 2016
Continuing in a string of Apple retail thefts, a bold band of burglars earlier this week made off with 19 iPhones worth some $13,000 from a busy store in Natick, Mass., according to local reports.




As reported by The MetroWest Daily News, police said the Apple Natick Collection outlet was the scene of a speedy burglary on Tuesday perpetrated by a group of seven unidentified individuals. Described as a "pack," the suspects are believed to be teens or young men and women.

"We've been hearing about this," said Natick police spokesperson Lt. Cara Rossi. "They're traveling in packs. They brazenly walk in together and steal."

A video of the incident posted to the Natick Police Department's official Facebook page on Thursday suggests a reasonably well coordinated operation.

Wearing hoodies, the roving gang can be seen entering the mall at around 7:15 p.m., making a beeline straight for Apple. Once inside, the suspects gathered around display tables at the store's entrance -- iPhones are usually placed prominently on the sales floor to lure in passersby -- ripped 19 iPhones from their security tethers and scrambled out. The heist was over in less than a minute.

A post accompanying the Facebook video says the group might be connected to a similar theft last week in the town of Hingham, about an hour's drive from Natick.

The incident follows a rash of Apple retail thefts in the U.S., the most recent being cases in New York City. More sophisticated than the Natick outfit, swindlers in New York disguised themselves as Apple employees to gain access to back-of-store repair rooms. In June, a lone suspect pilfered 19 iPhones from the SoHo store, while a gang of three hit the Upper West Side location twice this year using similar tactics. The latter group of imposters made off with a total of 67 iPhones.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    irnchrizirnchriz Posts: 1,581member
    Isn't this a bit dumb as Apple will just brick the handsets? Also, don't display handsets run a custom firmware?
    redgeminipamike1Soliretrogustotycho24SpamSandwichzoetmbrepressthisbadmonkjbdragon
  • Reply 2 of 25
    I never understood the thinking behind stealing an iPhone on display from a store. Aren't they registered and easily spotted or at leased bricked?
    badmonkjbdragon
  • Reply 3 of 25
    Yup, not just locked but also actively log their GPS locations to Apple which i'm sure they'll share with the police. 
    redgeminipaSpamSandwichrepressthisbadmonkjbdragonjony0
  • Reply 4 of 25
    irelandireland Posts: 17,547member
    Hope they get caught. A lesson for the learning.
    redgeminipatycho24badmonk
  • Reply 5 of 25
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,792member
    irnchriz said:
    Isn't this a bit dumb as Apple will just brick the handsets? Also, don't display handsets run a custom firmware?
    Why would they care...they'll just sell them on eBay or something. Its not their problem.
    lkrupprepressthisaylkbadmonk
  • Reply 6 of 25
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,792member
    I never understood the thinking behind stealing an iPhone on display from a store. Aren't they registered and easily spotted or at leased bricked?
    They run a special image on them and I believe are setup specifically as demo units. I'm not sure if they'll even make phone calls.
    mike1afrodri1stbadmonkjbdragon
  • Reply 7 of 25
    The stolen phones can certainly be used for spare parts. The logic board will be useless to whomever ends up with it. I imagine that the LCD would fetch the most money. Sometimes selling used items parted out is more valuable than the whole.The top nine most popular parts for the iPhone 6s will cost around $400 on ifixit.com. They sell the logic board for a whopping $299.95!
    afrodriaylkjony0
  • Reply 8 of 25
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 6,799member
    linkman said:
    The stolen phones can certainly be used for spare parts. The logic board will be useless to whomever ends up with it. I imagine that the LCD would fetch the most money. Sometimes selling used items parted out is more valuable than the whole.The top nine most popular parts for the iPhone 6s will cost around $400 on ifixit.com. They sell the logic board for a whopping $299.95!

    So maybe there’s an iPhone “chop shop” out there with kidnapped Liam being forced to take them apart? <s>
    holyonerepressthisbigmikenolamacguy
  • Reply 9 of 25
    Cata.LinCata.Lin Posts: 1unconfirmed, member

    I never understood the thinking behind stealing an iPhone on display from a store. Aren't they registered and easily spotted or at leased bricked?
    They don't care, they sold them long ago, maybe several hours after the heist
  • Reply 10 of 25
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,689member
    $13,000 ÷ 7 = $1857. That's the MSRP. On the street, obviously less than that for a whole unit, or perhaps more for parts, even after you consider the cost of the teardowns and extra overhead for selling as parts. Still, it doesn't seem like it's worth the risk.
    jbdragon
  • Reply 11 of 25
    MacProMacPro Posts: 18,148member
    I'd assume the store has camera coverage throughout and with the level of todays facial recognition technology (no I don't mean Photos lol) plus everything everyone has said above, it seems a pretty dumb move which ever way you look at it.
  • Reply 12 of 25
    linkmanlinkman Posts: 893member
    Soli said:
    $13,000 ÷ 7 = $1857. That's the MSRP. On the street, obviously less than that for a whole unit, or perhaps more for parts, even after you consider the cost of the teardowns and extra overhead for selling as parts. Still, it doesn't seem like it's worth the risk.
    Seven was the known number of perpetrators inside the store. I think it comes out to $13000 ÷ 19 = $684.
    Soli
  • Reply 13 of 25
    kent909kent909 Posts: 708member
    If Wells Fargo can rip off thousands of customers for millions of dollars and no one go goes to jail, what makes you think anyone really cares about this. Yes a police report is filed and maybe if a cop pulled the thieves over and saw the phones on the back seat they would get caught but otherwise no one is really going to bother with this.
    nolamacguy
  • Reply 14 of 25
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,689member
    kent909 said:
    If Wells Fargo can rip off thousands of customers for millions of dollars and no one go goes to jail, what makes you think anyone really cares about this. Yes a police report is filed and maybe if a cop pulled the thieves over and saw the phones on the back seat they would get caught but otherwise no one is really going to bother with this.
    More man hours has been spent on the WF case than will ever be spent on this. The fact that people won't go to jail has to do with its complexity and decentralization. Can't put the company in jail, you can only fine it. With this, it's a physical theft where the 7 main culrprits probably have criminal records and may be determined through various means using the store video and video from the surrounding area.
  • Reply 15 of 25
    kent909kent909 Posts: 708member
    Soli said:
    kent909 said:
    If Wells Fargo can rip off thousands of customers for millions of dollars and no one go goes to jail, what makes you think anyone really cares about this. Yes a police report is filed and maybe if a cop pulled the thieves over and saw the phones on the back seat they would get caught but otherwise no one is really going to bother with this.
    More man hours has been spent on the WF case than will ever be spent on this. The fact that people won't go to jail has to do with its complexity and decentralization. Can't put the company in jail, you can only fine it. With this, it's a physical theft where the 7 main culrprits probably have criminal records and may be determined through various means using the store video and video from the surrounding area.
    Your making it sound like the perfect crime. WF steals millions, the government fines them and they get the millions. So who is the criminal here? How many people who had fake accounts opened in their name still are not aware of getting ripped off. Are they getting the money back, or is that to complex to figure out?
    nolamacguy
  • Reply 16 of 25
    I never understood the thinking behind stealing an iPhone on display from a store. Aren't they registered and easily spotted or at leased bricked?
    It can still be sold for parts.
  • Reply 17 of 25
    macxpress said:
    irnchriz said:
    Isn't this a bit dumb as Apple will just brick the handsets? Also, don't display handsets run a custom firmware?
    Why would they care...they'll just sell them on eBay or something. Its not their problem.

    Oh, eBay? Like the most traceable way possible. Seems legit.
    Just 19 separate email accounts, 19 separate PayPal accounts, linked to 19 separate bank accounts.... sounds simple and fun!
    Are you a criminal mastermind to concoct this brilliant plan???

    Jk. That's the dumbest thing I've ever heard.
    I guess you somehow have heard of eBay & very loosely understand its purpose, but the vagueries of how it operates are a mystery to you?
    1st, the payment is via PayPal, which links to a bank account, which has your name & info. Sooooooo, probably not a good way to move stolen property. Also, PayPal can "reach" into that account & take back the money you received if the sale was contested. Next, it has a rating/feedback system. Nobody is going to send $600+ for a brand new phone to someone that has zero or negative one reviews.

    Try using the slightest amount of critical thinking skills PRIOR to posting, please.

    repressthis
  • Reply 18 of 25
    bdkennedy said:
    I never understood the thinking behind stealing an iPhone on display from a store. Aren't they registered and easily spotted or at leased bricked?
    It can still be sold for parts.
    Making the value of those $13,000 worth of phones, roughly $760.
  • Reply 19 of 25
    Why don't these crooks go steal some Galaxy Note 7 phablets? Oh, wait...
    jbdragonwatto_cobra
  • Reply 20 of 25
    SoliSoli Posts: 8,689member
    kent909 said:
    Soli said:
    kent909 said:
    If Wells Fargo can rip off thousands of customers for millions of dollars and no one go goes to jail, what makes you think anyone really cares about this. Yes a police report is filed and maybe if a cop pulled the thieves over and saw the phones on the back seat they would get caught but otherwise no one is really going to bother with this.
    More man hours has been spent on the WF case than will ever be spent on this. The fact that people won't go to jail has to do with its complexity and decentralization. Can't put the company in jail, you can only fine it. With this, it's a physical theft where the 7 main culrprits probably have criminal records and may be determined through various means using the store video and video from the surrounding area.
    Your making it sound like the perfect crime. WF steals millions, the government fines them and they get the millions. So who is the criminal here? How many people who had fake accounts opened in their name still are not aware of getting ripped off. Are they getting the money back, or is that to complex to figure out?
    Really? You read my comment and it reads to you like "the perfect crime"? Personally, I say the perfect crime is one where there is no evidence of theft, but you're entitled to think of WF as some sort of corporate Ocean's 11, if you'd like.
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