A group of Amazon employees is in hot water after allegedly stealing thousands of iPhones from the online retailer, reports iPadizate.
The five employees worked at a logistics center in Madrid, Spain, and used their positions in the shipping department to perpetrate the theft.
The theft was discovered by Amazon, which initiated the investigation. The company became suspicious after some packages were shipped with a weight that was different than expected. Amazon set up hidden cameras to identify the reason for these weight discrepancies.
Amazon discovered that employees were intercepting packages right before they left the warehouse. The employees would remove the actual package contents and replace them with an iPhone 12 or an iPhone 12 Pro. Amazon believes the employees were working with an accomplice who was placing orders through the retailer’s website.
Three employees were arrested while leaving work, while one was still working when he was apprehended. The fifth employee turned himself in following the other arrests. The workers had ten iPhones in their possession and a large number of IMEI stickers. The stickers presumably were removed from the iPhone boxes to conceal the theft.
All five employees have been fired from Amazon while the company investigates whether other employees were involved in this iPhone theft ring.
It is estimated that the group stole up to 500,000 euros ($592,000) in iPhones.
iPhones and other Apple products are popular targets for thieves because of their high resale value and popularity. This year, a shipment of iPhones worth three million euros was stolen from Amsterdam’s Schipol airport.
In another high-profile heist at the same airport, thieves stole 4,400 Apple Watches worth 530,000 euros