iPhones stolen, snatched in Pakistan being resold in Dubai

Police say that numerous such iPhones have been recovered from individuals returning to Pakistan from Dubai

Apple iPhone 11 (L) and iPhone 11 Pro (R) are displayed during an Apple special event on September 10, 2019, in Cupertino, California. — AFP
Apple iPhone 11 (L) and iPhone 11 Pro (R) are displayed during an Apple special event on September 10, 2019, in Cupertino, California. — AFP

KARACHI: Police on Monday said that stolen or snatched iPhones from Pakistan are being resold after being reset. 

According to law enforcement officials, numerous such iPhones have been recovered from individuals returning to Pakistan from Dubai. 

Deputy Inspector General (DIG) South Irfan Baloch told Geo News that the South zone police cross-checked the IMEI numbers of 10,237 distinct mobile phones seized or stolen in Karachi within the system between November 2022 and July 2023.

In the South district, 1,230 cases resulted in 423 recovered mobile phones, and in the City district, IMEI numbers of 1,978 mobile phones were processed, leading to 345 recovered and 989 traced.

Baloch added that IMEI numbers for 1,452 mobile phones from the Keamari district were screened, among which 377 were recovered and 726 traced. He also pointed out that substantial evidence indicated that the cellphones confiscated or stolen in Karachi are being sold in Dubai and Afghanistan.

At least 22 mobile phones, according to the DIG, were smuggled through Balochistan into Afghanistan, where they were sold in local markets and seized as a result. These phones were equipped with Pakistani mobile SIMs upon reaching Quetta, leading to their identification.

Furthermore, DIG South Baloch disclosed that his team had recovered several stolen iPhones from Karachi, which underwent sophisticated processes to bypass iCloud passcodes and were reset before being sold in the Dubai market.

He also clarified that the people from whom these iPhones were confiscated had originally purchased them from local markets in Dubai and then brought them into Pakistan.