Man arrested for stealing 1,800 iPhones from work and 'selling them on the side'

iPhones (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • A man has been arrested for stealing 1,800 iPhones from his work and then "selling them on the side."
  • The man ordered the iPhone 7 handsets from Verizon using his work's account and sold them on.

A Meriden, CT man was arrested after it was discovered he had ordered 2,000 iPhone 7 handsets on his work's Verizon account but only distributed 200 of them to employees. The remaining 1,800 had been stolen and then sold on.

Brian Pearsall, 45, has been charged with first-degree larceny and will appear in Meriden Superior Court on Aug. 20 according to local reports.

The story goes that Pearsall worked at a hazardous waste management company named Tradebe and "used his position to steal a large quantity of Apple iPhones from the company and then sold them for his own personal gain."

Pearsall was authorized to order new or replacement phones from Verizon Wireless' online portal, which were charged to Tradebe.A representative from Verizon contacted Tradebe on Aug. 6, 2019 after an audit showed that over 2,000 iPhone 7s were purchased in the previous 12 months for 99 cents each, the report said. Only 200 of the phones were activated on the Tradebe account.

When an employee emailed Pearsall to ask what was going on, he reportedly replied and said that he was "hustling on the side and selling them." Things obviously unraveled from there!

What makes this all the more silly is Pearsall could have just checked our list of the best iPhone deals if he'd wanted a cheap iPhone! That would surely have been a much better idea, wouldn't you agree?

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too. Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.