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Each day Apple Retailer thief sentenced, viral selfie yielded no tips about the Apple crime blotter

The FBI hacked an iPhone in the Long Island Iced Tea crypto investigation, a Chinese counterfeiter in a million-dollar fake iPhone ring has been sentenced, and more in the Apple crime roundup.

The Apple Store in Portland

The Apple Store in Portland

The latest in an occasional AppleInsider series, looking at the world of Apple-related crime.

Viral selfie of iPhone thief yielded no leads

In a Facebook post in early July that went hugely viral, the police department in Kearny, N.J., shared a photo of a man who had allegedly stolen an iPhone, and posted a selfie to the phone owner’s Instagram. While the photo of the man’s face was widely shared by local and national news outlets, it hasn’t led to an arrest in the month since.

The department “did not receive any worthwhile tips with our post,” a Kearny detective told AppleInsider in an email, and the case remains unsolved.

Chinese national gets three years for smuggling of counterfeit goods

Jianhua “Jeff” Li, a Chinese man living in the U.S. on a student visa, was sentenced Tuesday to three years in prison for his role in a scheme to counterfeit fake iPhones and iPads, and smuggle them into the United States. Per a Justice Department press release, Li had pled guilt to his role in the conspiracy to smuggle more than 40,000 electronic devices and accessories.

The group is believed to have earned more than $1.1 million from the sale of counterfeit electronics in the United States.

Man gets prison for daily Apple Store thefts in Portland

We told you in February about a man who stole from the same Apple Store in Portland, Ore., nearly every day for months and was eventually arrested. Now, per The Oregonian, he’s been sentenced to over three years in prison.

The 39-year-old man, who had reportedly been stealing in order to support a drug habit, would run into the store while the guard was missing or distracted. He also admitted he had stolen from other stores.

FBI hacked iPhone in Long Island Iced Tea investigation

The company behind Long Island Iced Tea made headlines two years ago for announcing a pivot to blockchain technology. The government is investigating that pivot and the possibility that was tied to an insider trading scheme- and part of their evidence came from an iPhone that the government successfully hacked.

According to Quartz, investigators are examining messages between two men who have been implicated in the scheme —and the FBI, in 2018, was able to hack into one of the men’s iPhones. It’s not clear what model iPhone was involved, but the government did obtain a warrant.

iPhone thief gave employee his ID

It’s not normally advised for those planning to steal to give store employees their ID with their name and information, but one accused thief reportedly did just that.

Per Forest Park Review, a 20-year-old Illinois man entered a Walmart, said he wanted to buy two iPhones, and then said he wanted to apply for a credit card in order to pay for them, and handed the employee his state ID and debit card. However, when the employee returned one of the iPhones was gone, and the man’s information had been deleted from a computer.

The man was arrested not long after.

$12,000 in iPhones taken from Walmart

Over $12,000 in iPhones were stolen from a Walmart location in Galesburg, Ill. WGIL reports two thieves used a black pry bar that was for sale at the store to pry open a drawer and take the items.

Suspect sought in Chick-fil-A iPad theft

A man who police believe stole an iPad from a Chick-fil-A in Vacaville, Calif., was caught on store security cameras. According to The Reporter, the man showed up just before closing and reportedly swiped the device while employees were distracted.

Women wanted for stealing 24 Apple Watches

Police are looking for two women who they say were responsible for the thefts of 24 Apple Watches from a Walmart in Georgia. Online Athens writes the crime took place in early June, when two suspects pried open a locked case and took the watches, valued at nearly $9,000. An additional theft of two iPads brought the total haul to over $10,000.

DNA from iPhone helped catch accused car thief

iPhones have solved a lot of crimes over the years, but not often because of DNA on them. But just that happened in Louisiana last week. Per The Advocate, a man from Baton Rouge led police on a chase in a stolen car, which he eventually took airborne before crashing into a house. The man then fled, but swabs on an iPhone left at the scene led to a DNA match and the man’s arrest.

Have an Apple-related crime story? Email AppleInsider and tell us about it.


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