Two Chinese students in Oregon in the US allegedly duped Apple of iPhones worth around $1 million, according to a report by The Oregonian.
Engineering students Yangyang Zhou and Quan Jiang are facing criminal charges in a federal court in the US for importing counterfeit iPhones from China and getting them replaced with real iPhones from Apple.
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As per the report, Jiang regularly received shipments of counterfeit iPhones from China, which he would send for exchange under Apple’s return policy.
During the investigation, it was discovered that Jiang allegedly made 3,096 iPhone warranty claims, out of which 1,493 iPhones were replaced, which caused Apple loss of an estimated $895,800.
The real iPhones were then sent to China in return for which money was paid to Jiang’s mother, who lives in China. Jiang could access the bank account from the US in which his mother deposited the money received by selling the phones in China.
Several boxes that contained counterfeit Apple iPhones were also found addressed to Zhou as well. Over 200 iPhone warranty claims were made in his name, the report adds.
“Jiang estimated that during 2017, he submitted 2,000 telephones to Apple for warranty repairs,” The Oregonian quoted the affidavit written by Homeland Security Investigations agent Thomas Duffy, who interviewed Jiang.
Jiang allegedly shipped non-working phones for repair or replacement both in person as well as shipped while making the claim online through the company’s online support. Apple can’t immediately examine or repair phones that would not turn on, which led to the alleged fraud.
Apple is facing similar issues in China as well, where according to a The Information report of October 2018, fraudulent iPhone repair claims in China cost Apple billions of dollars over a period of five years,