Police seize fake iPhones in $750,000 haul of counterfeit items

Posted:
in iPhone edited March 30

Fake iPhones, AirPods and iPhone cases were among counterfeit goods seized in police raids in Northern Ireland.

Pile of various electrical devices and components inside clear plastic evidence bags.
Fake Apple items seized in Northern Ireland



It turns out that counterfeiting Apple devices is not confined to the US. On Thursday 28 March, 2024, the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) seized over 20,000 counterfeit devices in two related raids across Belfast and 30 miles away in Portadown.

According to BBC News, PSNI spokesperson Detective Sergeant Mason did not reveal what proportion of the goods seized were copies of Apple products. The selection of items seen in police photographs appear to be predominantly Apple fakes, though.

PSNI did say that items included counterfeit iPhones, AirPods, and unspecified smartwatches, cellphones, and chargers.

"Collectively the products represent an estimated brand loss of 600,000 to Apple and other high street brands," said DS Mason. The officer cautioned that criminals will "attempt to copy anything," and said that such fake goods often fund organized crime.

A 24-year-old man was arrested after the Portadown raid, but reportedly so far on suspicion of immigration offences, rather than necessarily the counterfeiting.

DS Mason said that the Belfast and Portadown raids followed ones in England's East Midlands region. Separately, a repair firm in that area was fined almost $150,000 in 2021, for selling counterfeit Apple chargers.



Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 6
    tokyojimutokyojimu Posts: 529member
    I used to see fake iPhones all over Asia in the early days, but haven’t seen one in ages. 
    killroywatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 6
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,913member
    I wonder how one can make fake iPhone ? You still need components from the Apple supplier to make it to look and function like genuine iPhone. Apple is not stupid to let anyone buy those components.
    danoxwatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 6
    killroykillroy Posts: 275member
    wood1208 said:
    I wonder how one can make fake iPhone ? You still need components from the Apple supplier to make it to look and function like genuine iPhone. Apple is not stupid to let anyone buy those components.

    Your may open it and find it's an android phone running a messed up version of iOS.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 6
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,840member
    wood1208 said:
    I wonder how one can make fake iPhone ? You still need components from the Apple supplier to make it to look and function like genuine iPhone. Apple is not stupid to let anyone buy those components.
    Give it time once right to repair is the law of the land, then stolen iPhones, Apple Watches, iPads will become a resource to be mined by thieves, local chop shops and the government security apparatus.....Even Meta and Google might join in for data deep underground. :smile: 
    edited March 31 watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 6
    macguimacgui Posts: 2,357member
    AI said:
    It turns out that counterfeiting Apple devices is not confined to the US.

    I didn't know counterfeiting Apple devices in the US was a thing. Not that the US is a bastion of honest free trade, but that production costs even for counterfeit products would keep it from being a significant or lucrative practice. The ability to avoid being caught in Customs would be significant so it makes good business sense. I don't approve the business model.
  • Reply 6 of 6
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 6,093member
    macgui said:
    AI said:
    It turns out that counterfeiting Apple devices is not confined to the US.

    I didn't know counterfeiting Apple devices in the US was a thing. Not that the US is a bastion of honest free trade, but that production costs even for counterfeit products would keep it from being a significant or lucrative practice. The ability to avoid being caught in Customs would be significant so it makes good business sense. I don't approve the business model.
    There was an article here on AI not that long ago.  It was a fake iPhone, and it had copied not only the physical iPhone, and the OS (to a point), but also the packaging.  Someone (or a Chinese company) had put serious effort and R&D to make it as close of an iPhone-clone as possible   The exterior of the iPhone (and packaging) was perfect.  I was amazed by it.

    I believe it was running Android, but the UI was completely done to mimic iOS.  Only when one starts getting into the settings and many of the settings did not work did it reveal that was not authentic.  I'm sure whoever made it was on Apple's radar for an eventual raid.  If those companies put all that effort and R&D to making an actual, legal product they probably would make more money.
Sign In or Register to comment.