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Man accused of being ringleader in Florida iPhone scam

A 26-year-old man was taken into police custody in Florida after he was accused of being involved in an iPhone ring that was estimated to total more than $500,000. According to the report, the man was believed to have been the mastermind of this ring while he was an employee at an Apple Store located in the Galleria Mall.

The authorities claimed that the defendant and a co-defendant who worked at a nearby Best Buy would obtain a list of serial numbers of iPhones that were available for purchase. The accused man would then allegedly have his employees take in any locked phones or phones that were allegedly stolen. They would then exchange these phones at the Genius Bar. The employees would swap out the locked or stolen phones using a serial number off the Best Buy inventory. They were reportedly given $75 for each phone they swapped out.

The stolen iPhones were reportedly sold to individuals, but it was not known who the phones were sold to. Ultimately, five individuals were believed to be involved in the ring. The wife of one of those who was taken into custody, a 44-year-old man, stated that he had become desperate after being diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. The ringleader reportedly was charged with fraudulently obtaining property over the amount of $50,000, one count of grand theft and one count of stolen property.

Those who are accused of theft may face serious consequences depending upon the amount that was allegedly stolen. However, an attorney may be able to help their client provide a strong defense against the charges by either providing evidence that they were not knowingly involved in illegal activity or by finding fault in the prosecution's investigation.

Source: NBC Miami, "Fort Lauderdale Police Break Up iPhone Theft Ring", August 14, 2014

Source: NBC Miami, "Fort Lauderdale Police Break Up iPhone Theft Ring", August 14, 2014

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