Consumers in Calgary buying a cellphone online should beware of models recently stolen in bulk, say city police.
Late last month, 192 of the devices worth a total of about $150,000 were stolen from a warehouse in the city’s northeast, and police expect them to be posted online for sale.
“We urge Calgarians to do their due diligence before purchasing a cellphone online,” said Staff Sgt. Mark England.
The phones can’t be activated by service providers for full use and would likely only be useful to access wi-fi, say police.
Thieves were contacting prospective buyers online, say police, who urge those using the internet for purchasing to meet the seller at a mobile phone retailer to confirm the phone’s serial, or IMEI number.
“Investigators believe the fraudsters are providing fake IMEI numbers to potential buyers,” said city police.
Buyers should also refrain from using anything but cash, and if they suspect they’ve been offered stolen items, to file a report with police.
The stolen devices are Samsung Note20 Ultra 5G 128 in black and bronze, black-coloured Apple iPhone SE 2nd generation 64GB, LG 41S in titan grey, white LGK61, Apple iPhone XR 64GB in black, red Apple iPhone 11 64GB and black Huawei P30.
“We’re asking anyone who finds they have purchased a stolen phone after Aug. 21 to report the incident to police,” added England.
“We want to stop the cycle of phones being stolen and resold.”