Two Apple stores in Australia were robbed by thieves who used sledgehammers to break into the stores located in Perth and suburban Booragoon.
According to a Facebook post by the Western Australia Police Force, a group of six men, dressed in black, used the sledgehammers in the early morning hours to break into the Apple stores and make off with $300,000 worth of products. After hitting the Perth store, the thieves made their way to the Booragoon location shortly after.
The robberies prompted Australian Detective Senior Constable Matt Whelan to tell ABC in Australia that consumers have to be careful when buying used Apple devices because the stolen phones have security built-in from Apple.
"The manufacturer knows what phones have been stolen and security measures will be enabled meaning these telephones are useless," Whelan was quoted as saying. "We want to protect the public and we ask anyone considering buying second-hand or used mobile phones that are slightly cheaper to consider this because ultimately you could be left with something that's useless."
He warned that consumers who purchase Apple products in the black market are technically a culprit. If the consumers weren't purchasing stolen goods, there wouldn't be a need for the thieves to target Apple stores.
The Australian break-ins weren't the first
The brazen breaks ins by the thieves in Australia isn't the first time Apple stores have been targeted. With the stores home to a slew of pricey devices, it's hard for some criminals to resit.
According to a media report in 2013, armed individuals broke into a Paris Apple store on New Year's Eve and stole more than $1.32 million of Apple products. They weren't in a rush either. They reportedly took about forty minutes to load the goods in their getaway car. Law enforcement has long urged the public to ignore offers for discounted Apple devices since there is a chance they were stolen.