Booming business in stolen iPhones

A 'known suspect' swiped 25 iPhones from a US Apple Store between December and January

News reports out of Charlotte, North Carolina, indicate a "known suspect" swiped 25 iPhones from an Apple Store at Northlake Mall between December 1 and January 11.

The Charlotte Observer and WCNC cite a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police report that reads: "The iPhones were stolen from the Genius Room located inside the store. The suspect did have access to the Genius Room."

The booty: US$16,425 worth of devices, including 22 16GB iPhone 4S models, one 32GB 4S, one 64GB 4S, and one 8GB iPhone 4 model.

The alleged crime was reported to police on Monday.

Not surprisingly, there's a booming business in stolen Apple products these days. The list goes on, but here are a few current examples, and a couple more from last year:

*The New York Post reported on Wednesday that an 81-year-old man was shoved onto the tracks at a Brooklyn subway station after chasing a teen who allegedly stole his iPhone.

* An Australian news site reported today that a mother and daughter were fined after stealing an iPhone from a patron of Rose City Shoppingworld, with police and mall staff using "Find My Phone" technology to track the device down.

* Last summer, the FBI reported arrests of three mall cellphone kiosk workers in the Washington DC, area for allegedly buying stolen iPhones and other Apple products, and reselling them for a profit.

* About a year ago, a woman was nabbed at Ben-Gurion Airport trying to smuggle 44 iPhones into Israel.

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