crime

226 iPhone 5 handsets stolen in Japan

31 Comments

Apple's iPhone 5 went on sale across Japan on Friday. Long lines formed outside many stores but apparently not everyone was willing to pay for the smartphone.

Police received reports that 226 iPhone 5 handsets were stolen in the Kansai area and Shiga Prefecture.

According to Fuji TV, 116 were stolen from a Softbank store in Osaka's Nishi Ward, 33 from a KDDI au store in Osaka, 42 from an au store in Sakai, and 30 from a store in Kobe-- 116 at its store in Osaka and the rest at stores in Kobe, Hyogo and Shiga.

Police said thieves broke into the Softbank store overnight. Surveillance camera footage showed "a suspicious individual" lurking near the store at 4 a.m., police said.

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31 Comments
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Probably will send to be sold overseas....

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Softbank locked iphones? doubtful.

AFAIK there isnt any way to unlock these phones (without hypersims - which may not work for the i5). And no doubt the serial numbers and other details would quickly render them useless.

Fairly silly i think, but who knows.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

uhhh...could someone get me their phone numbers. i want a new iphone 5!

-3 ( +2 / -4 )

Lilic is probably right. They might even be in a foreign country right now ... with experts tearing them apart to see how they work ... then producing their own version of the iPhone 5. A "new" version could be on the market soon ...

TV reported that they will be difficult to use in Japan because of their installed secret codes ... or something like that. In other words, they will be easily traced if someone tries to use them.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Just saw on TV where each of the stolen iPhone 5s has a SIM card in it, bearing a number that identifies each unit. So they will be hard to peddle.

One theory has it that they might have been stolen by a foreign concern (like in China?) and will be used in producing a new model (via the copying route).

And oddly ... all of the iPhone 5s were stolen at about the same time ... indicating a joint robbery operation.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

lol, thieves financed by samsung

4 ( +5 / -1 )

You'll see these pop up on yahoo auctions, gaijn pot and Craigslist over the next few weeks. Shouldn't be hard to track down these thrives cos the iPhones are all serial numbered. Twould be a good idea not to buy an iPhone 5 on the classifieds.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

You don't need to steal 221 of the things in order to reverse engineer, 3 or 4 would be enough. Given they were stolen in Kansai it is anyone's guess as to who is responsible but they were stolen to be sold for sure.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Lilic is probably right. They might even be in a foreign country right now ... with experts tearing them apart to see how they work ... then producing their own version of the iPhone 5. A "new" version could be on the market soon ...

TV reported that they will be difficult to use in Japan because of their installed secret codes ... or something like that. In other words, they will be easily traced if someone tries to use them.

I highly doubt that, after all, it does less than what it's competitors do so why would anyone need to "tear it apart" to learn how they work? If anything, they probably resold them online already. After reading some JP blogs and what not it seems like in Japan the iPhone is more popular simply because it's a status symbol to own one and because some Japanese won't touch those "dirty" Samsung phones because of their country of origin.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Also, why would someone in China need them to make a knockoff? It's made in China, pretty easy to get one to knock off.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Apple bite!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Osaka & China relations in the underworld of organized crime !!!!

Awesome ! ! ! ! ! !

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The only people that could have done it were the yaks

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Gogogo...what is a yak (other than a ungulate in Tibet)? I am sure Apple can simply block those serial numbers from accessing iTunes or any other thing to do with Apple....probably lead the police right to the person if they are stupid enough to use a contract sim in it that would have all their personal info attached to it)

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The way things are going the staff took them and are covering up by saying they are stolen. Then it could be a thief did get them. About the serial numbers the phones will probably turn up in one of any of a number of different countries. Perhaps North Korea or Afghanistan or Iran or you get it?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

the phones will probably turn up in one of any of a number of different countries. Perhaps North Korea or Afghanistan or Iran or you get it?

Naha, maybe....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why would Chinese steal them?...All they have to do is to get one person to line up and get one legally , and have no loose ends that way. Trouble free...

3 ( +3 / -0 )

all stolen in kansai ? um, looks like some low life from Tokyo did it.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

255 new iphones were stolen from an O2 shop in London.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I do not have a clue as to who the criminals can be and have like zero facts. In the total picture the amount is very small. Softbank will write off the loss and new phones (directly from China) will be delivered. In the world view this event is very small. Like the story of 6 cans of beer being destroyed in an earthquake in Tokyo, remember that?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

What a debate and speculations for such a peanuts thing!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I hope those theves try to use the i-os 6 map app to escape!

(those who get it, will get it).

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I doubt that the phones will be of any use. I'm sure that the serial numbers will be reported and the phones won't be able to be used for anything more than a camera.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Needless to say, Japan is one of the most peaceful and safest countries. Thats why people are not carefull. But there are bad guys anywhere. I want people in Japan to be more careful.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tomiyo, think it will not be enforced in a lot of countries. There are a lot of systems out there so the phone and text messages will work. Not sure if they turn off stolen phone ID's. There would be a lot of mistakes and problems. Besides a phone goes from new to trash quickly.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is the same as the Chinese buying the Xbox 360 in masses in Japan to bring it back to sell it at home. Yes, the 360 is also made in China but that doesn't stop them from buying it overseas.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Chinese and korean subterfuge! Failing that, gaijin ruffians! Failing that yakuza IT expertise... Oh.. Could be just theft. My money is on Aum.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'll bet high school and/or college students and (that) they're all "cracked" and currently in use as we speak.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The only people that could have done it were the yaks

Or shongryon, or Brazilian mafia or Nigerians, or else...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Least we forget... there is North Korea. Since phones were stolen from multiple providers, it may not just be for the iphone but for the sim. It is also possible that some Chinese or S. Korean company may want them too. It may be made in China but the it looks like much better if the were taken from Japan so the Chinese and/or S. Korean government have deniability. Would not be surprised of a Samsung-North Korea association, especially with all the dispute between Japan and China, Taiwan, and Korea. Considering how easy it was for N. Korea to kidnap children from Japan, what's a couple hundred phones.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

North Korea must be desperate for those phones.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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