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Crime blotter: Five indicted in California Apple product thefts

Apple Store at Grand Arcade in the U.K.

In the latest Apple Crime Blotter, video emerges of a woman in China biting iPhone cable, North Carolina businessmen sentenced in fraud, and Sam Bankman-Fried's story is coming to Apple TV+.

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

Five indicted in California for 200 Apple thefts

Four men and one woman have been charged with a large number of thefts of Apple devices online.

The five defendants are accused of "nearly 200 thefts, robberies and fraudulent transactions targeting individual sellers of Apple Inc. merchandise who used online marketplaces," the Justice Department announced on August 30.

The scheme, prosecutors say, involved repeated incidents in which the defendants met victims who were selling products on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, and often ran off with the devices. On other occasions, guns were used in order to steal the devices.

Three of the defendants were charged under the federal Hobbs Act, while the other two are in state custody.

Video emerges of woman in Apple Store chewing through video cable

The story of a woman in China biting through an iPhone cable rather than pay for the device made headlines around the world.

In-store security video led to the woman's arrest, and now the video has been released of the incident. Per Nextshark, "security footage from the store shows the woman stopping in front of the display and examining the device for a few moments.

Then, in a bizarre turn of events, she bites its anti-theft cable and chews it for a while. The woman eventually frees the phone, which she hides in her bag."

11 iPhones stolen from Apple Store in U.K.

Eleven iPhones were stolen from the Apple Store at the Grand Arcade in Cambridge in the U.K., on August 19, Cambridge News reported.

Two men have been "linked" to the theft, the Cambridgeshire Constabularly told the newspaper.

Charlotte businessmen sentenced to 46 months each in iPhone fraud case

A pair of North Carolina businessmen who pled guilty earlier this year to a fraud scheme involving iPhones have each been sentenced to 46 months in prison, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of North Carolina announced August 30.

The two men were sentenced for what prosecutors describe as "a multi-year scheme to buy, sell, and ship fraudulently obtained and stolen new Apple iPhones to domestic and international buyers."

Sam Bankman-Fried program coming to Apple TV+

Back in March, prosecutors and defense attorneys for disgraced crypto king Sam Bankman-Fried proposed a modification to the FTX founder's bail conditions which would bar him from using a smartphone.

Bankman-Fried's bail has since been revoked altogether and he is scheduled to stand trial in October. But it's now official that Apple has won a bidding war to adapt a forthcoming book about the rise and fall of FTX.

According to movie industry newsletter The Ankler, Apple paid a reported $5 million to adapt Michael Lewis' book Going Infinite: The Rise and Fall of a New Tycoon, which was written by Lewis while he was embedded in the Bahamas with Bankman-Fried during the crypto exchange's collapse.

Apple, when the book was first announced in late 2022, had been described as "near a deal" for the rights, but there was never any formal announcement.

It's one of eight different projects about FTX at different stages of development in Hollywood, although the book by Lewis, whose books led to the hit movies "The Blind Side" and "Moneyball," is considered a particularly strong bet.

"Porch pirate" steals iPad, seen fleeing in BMW

A man in Virginia stole an iPad out of the hands of a FedEx delivery driver and then was seen fleeing in a white BMW.

According to Fox 59, the iPad was delivered on August 24 to the home of a woman who was working from home. After the delivery driver knocked on her door, she checked her doorbell camera and found that the man, who had told the driver it was his house, had "walked up alongside her and took the package from her hands before running off to leave in a white BMW."

Amazon warehouse worker accused of stealing $10,000 of Apple and other products

A Florida woman who worked at an Amazon warehouse has been accused of stealing $10,000 worth of products from robots at the facility. Tamarac Talk reports the woman had been "systematically stealing high-value electronics, including iPads, Apple Watches, AirPods, [and] Samsung Tablets," from a distribution robot and hiding them elsewhere in the warehouse.

The woman was caught during one of the thefts, and confessed, also admitting that she had been selling items to a contact in Jamaica.

Woman's stolen iPhone ended up in China

In another case in which a person's iPhone was stolen in the United States but soon ended up in China, exactly that happened to one woman who lost her iPhone at a bar while vacationing in Nashville.

After she tracked the phone with her iPad, she saw it go from Georgia to Florida and eventually Guangdong, China. She had placed the phone in "Lost" mode, but received several threatening texts, presumably from the thieves or someone else who ended up with the device.

@jjjooorrrdddyyynnn13 Replying to @jo #greenscreen glad this entertained all of you lol bc its been quite entertaining for me as well #lostphone #stolenphone #storytime #nashville #stupid #thief #china original sound - jo

After wallet stolen at Home Goods, thieves used credit cards at Apple Store

According to police in Lancaster, Pa., a pair of suspects stole a victim's wallet from a Home Goods store in the area, and used the credit cards at the Apple store in Park City.

A reward has been offered of up to $1,000.