If you're looking for an outlet to serve your bulk iPhone shopping needs, London's Craigslist can't help you just this minute. The case of 40 16GB iPhone 4's that popped up on the embattled city's section of the Internet's classified yesterday — following the third night of riots — has been "flagged for removal" and is no longer on the site.
When the ad was still available, this is how it read:
40 Apple iPhone 4′s 16GB – £320 (east)
All these iphones are brand new and sealed. They have not been open from box all are on 02 and come with a years warranty. I can sort out a discount if more than 3 are purchased.
Gawker's Adrian Chen queried the seller while the ad was still available, asking about the origin of the 40 iPhones, "Were those looted or legally purchased?"
The seller's response: "Mate I just come back from holiday I bought them all from america." (sic)
With the growing online rogues' galleries of London looters in action — hauling off armfuls of electronics, stacks of clothing still on the hanger and even Brady Bunch-sized bags of Basmati rice — it's not surprising someone will try to turn an extra profit on their criminal activity.
Online auction site eBay says it's on board with UK police, issuing this statement:
Our thoughts are with the businesses and communities affected by recent events in London and around the UK. eBay will cooperate fully with the investigating authorities to identify and remove any listings which are linked to criminal activity.
UK classifieds site Gumtree, which is owned by eBay, says it will do the same. "We work closely with the police and will do everything we can to help them bring any criminals using our site in this way to justice," a Gumtree spokeswoman said in a media statement. She added that users who spot a suspicious ad take advantage of the "report" button that appears with every page, and the site administrators would investigate.
(We have reached out to Craigslist and will update this post when we hear back.)
While the case of iPhone 4s are gone and according to the seller, not stolen, there's no telling when a pallet of white iPad 2s might show up on online (with prices so low, you'll think they're INSANE).
More on the London riots:
- Citizen cameras capture more London looters than cops
- UK artists, musicians organize Twitter @riotcleanup
- Interactive maps reveal satellite's view of UK riots
- BlackBerry hacked after offering to aid police in London riots