Thu | Jun 20, 2019

Chinese man guilty of defrauding 1,500 iPhones from Apple

Published:Thursday | May 23, 2019 | 10:01 AM
This September 12, 2018, shows an Apple iPhone XR on display at the Steve Jobs Theater after an event to announce new products, in Cupertino, California. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Over the span of two years, a Chinese national in Oregon sent devices that looked like iPhones to Apple, saying they wouldn’t turn on and should be replaced under warranty.

He didn’t just submit a couple of the devices -- he delivered in person or shipped to Apple around 3,000 of them.

Apple responded by sending almost 1,500 replacement iPhones, each with an approximate resale value of $600.

But the devices that Quan Jiang sent Apple were fake.

Jiang, 30, a former engineering student at a community college in Albany, Oregon, pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to trafficking in counterfeit goods, the U.S. Attorney’s office in Portland announced.

The presence of fake iPhones and other high-tech gadgets has become an issue in global resale markets, with some counterfeit versions operating so well it’s hard for users to tell the difference between them and the genuine products.

But in the Oregon case, the makers of the thousands of fake phones apparently didn’t even have to bother with having working operating systems.

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