TECH

Couple found guilty of trying to steal more than $3 million from Apple

Couple found guilty of defrauding Apple in repair scheme

Two people developed a scheme that included sending counterfeit iPhones are sent to Apple for repairs in an attempt to replace them with real ones — and for this he can be imprisoned for 20 years.

Haotian Sun and Pengfei Xue, residents of Germantown, Maryland, were found guilty by a federal jury Tuesday of trying to steal millions of dollars worth of iPhones from Apple. They were found guilty of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and mail fraud, which are serious crimes with a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Columbia.

Between May 2017 and September 2019, it was discovered that Sun, Xue and other co-conspirators were attempting to obtain genuine iPhones from Apple by sending counterfeit devices through Apple's repair program. The counterfeit devices were sourced from Hong Kong and shipped to UPS mailboxes in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

They then sent counterfeit iPhones with fake serial numbers and IMEI numbers to Apple retailers and Apple Authorized Service Providers. Evidence showed that they provided over 5,000 counterfeit phones, which would have resulted in a loss to Apple of over $3 million. The couple was arrested in December 2019.

District Court Judge Timothy J. Kelly set sentencing for June 21, 2024.

Apple recently thanked a security researcher in the OS update notes. just days after he was indicted in a scheme that allowed him to steal millions of dollars worth of Apple products, gift cards and services.

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