11:26 am - Tuesday December 18, 2018

INVESTIGATION: NIGERIAN Gangs Steal iPhones in UK, make Millions in Phone Re-sell at Computer Village Lagos…armed with acid, robbing pedestrians of their smartphones *Snatches ten of thousands of phones on British streets to supply a booming black market run by crime lords in Nigeria * Facts: In 2016 there were 446,000 UK phone thefts. In London alone, there were 60,000 mobile thefts and robberies, almost two-thirds of them iPhones *“This is a very serious matter. We’ve seen an increase in moped crimes across the UK. The police need to take these crimes more seriously and make investigating them a higher priority. And sentences need to reflect that this is serious organised crime which should attract tougher penalties”-Tory MP Bob Neill, chairman of the Commons Justice Committee *“It is truly shocking to think that violent attacks here in the UK are being used to make black marketeers in other parts of the world wealthy”- Fellow Tory Andrew Percy BY SUSAN IBADE/SPECIAL CRIME CORRESPONDENT, UNITED KINGDOM

INVESTIGATION:

NIGERIAN Gangs Steal iPhones in UK, make Millions in Phone Re-sell at Computer Village Lagos…armed with acid, robbing pedestrians of their smartphones

*Snatches ten of thousands of phones on British streets to supply a booming black market run by crime lords in Nigeria

* Facts: In 2016 there were 446,000 UK phone thefts. In London alone, there were 60,000 mobile thefts and robberies, almost two-thirds of them iPhones

*“This is a very serious matter. We’ve seen an increase in moped crimes across the UK. The police need to take these crimes more seriously and make investigating them a higher priority. And sentences need to reflect that this is serious organised crime which should attract tougher penalties”-Tory MP Bob Neill, chairman of the Commons Justice Committee

*“It is truly shocking to think that violent attacks here in the UK are being used to make black marketeers in other parts of the world wealthy”- Fellow Tory Andrew Percy

BY SUSAN IBADE/SPECIAL CRIME CORRESPONDENT, UNITED KINGDOM

SOME NIGERIANS ARE BENT ON SOILING AFRICA’S MOST POPULOUS BLACK NATION’S IMAGE IN UNITED KINGDOM. There are some Nigerians that have formed gangs whose specialty is to continually steal innocent passers-by iPhone in hundreds, fly back to Nigeria , especially Computer Village, close to under the bridge Ikeja, where another phase of these gangs are waiting to sells-off the stolen British phones in Slock Market, Lagos at exorbitant prices.

Nigerian gangs making MILLIONS from phones nicked in UK phone theft epidemic investigators discovered ‘UK used’ iPhones for sale in Nigeria’s largest city amid Britain’s epidemic of moped yobs, often armed with acid, robbing pedestrians of their smartphones

These thugs specialize in snatching tens of thousands of phones on UK streets to supply a booming black market run by crime lords in Nigeria. The mobiles, seized by acid-armed yobs, are shipped 4,500 miles to be sold for up to £560 to Nigeria’s tech-starved middle classes.

This investigation as confirmed by other mainstream media outlets discovered “UK used” iPhones being sold for £560 in stores and markets in Nigeria’s largest city Lagos. Business is booming for the Nigerian racketeers because of soaring demand from the oil-rich middle classes in a country where hi-tech gadgets are relatively scarce.

And because Nigeria has not signed up to a global deal blacklisting stolen phones, British moped gangs are able to keep the crime bosses supplied by exporting tens of thousands of snatched mobiles. MPs urged police to cut off that supply by cracking down on the moped gangs.

Tory MP Bob Neill, chairman of the Commons Justice Committee, said: “This is a very serious matter. We’ve seen an increase in moped crimes across the UK. The police need to take these crimes more seriously and make investigating them a higher priority. And sentences need to reflect that this is serious organised crime which should attract tougher penalties.”

Fellow Tory Andrew Percy said: “It is truly shocking to think that violent attacks here in the UK are being used to make black marketeers in other parts of the world wealthy.”

For the records, In 2016 there were 446,000 UK phone thefts. In London alone, there were 60,000 mobile thefts and robberies, almost two-thirds of them iPhones. In the 12 months to June 2017, the Met recorded 16,158 phone crimes related to mopeds, more than three times those reported in the year to June 2016.

The moped thugs are willing to resort to appalling violence.

Three weeks ago raider, Derryck John was jailed for 10½ years for hurling acid in the face of six people in London. He is one of an increasingly violent breed of young criminals hunting in packs armed with corrosive chemicals and knives.

They travel two to a moped so the passenger can grab valuables as they pass a victim. The phones they grab are first plundered of data which is used to try to hack bank accounts.

They are then sold on in bulk to middle men who ship them to eastern Europe to be stripped of private information and reconditioned. The phones are then moved on for sale — with Nigeria, Algeria and India the main markets.

The Sun witnessed the end of the chain at the sprawling “Computer Village” market in the Lagos suburb of Ikeja. Multiple stores offered “UK phones and accessories” and “UK used phones at affordable prices.”

Traders we questioned insisted their merchandise was from reputable sources. A seller at Emeka Michael EB International Shop said: “Most of our phones are London used.”

We found iPhones at sale for £560 — £310 cheaper than the authorised Apple dealer’s price. Another store in Computer Village offered an iPhone 6 for £230. Nigeria’s lack of phone network regulation makes it an easy target for crooks.

Countries across Europe, the US and South America have signed a deal to effectively blacklist stolen devices. It gives each phone a unique number which is added to a global database when it is reported stolen — making it useless in those nations who are part of the agreement.

But Nigeria is yet to sign up. And a mobile industry source said: “By staying off the blacklist they are creating the market for stolen mobile phones. If all nations stood together, a mobile would be useless once reported stolen. But countries like Nigeria are effectively inviting illicit imports.”

 

#Additional reports by The SUN

 

 

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