An employee at Apple’s manufacturing partner Foxconn has reportedly been detained by Chinese police over allegations the 40-year old man stole and sold iPhone 6 shells in the week’s leading up to the device’s unveiling. The report comes from The Wall Street Journal, which cites local reports from Communist Party-run newspaper Taihang Daily:
Chinese police in recent days said that on Sept. 4, they detained an employee of Foxconn, a major Apple contractor, for stealing shells of the new phone from a factory in northern Shanxi province… The factory is in a development zone in the city of Jincheng. A staffer who picked up the phone at the public security bureau in in the zone confirmed that a suspect had been detained and that it was working with Foxconn. She added that the incident is still under investigation.
According to the reports, the suspect sold six “shells” of the device (probably not unlike the several that leaked prior to the iPhone 6 unveiling) and received 6,000 yuan or $960 US for the parts. “According to the local media account, Mr. Qiao in July found an advertisement near his factory that said, “purchasing parts from Apple Inc. at high prices.” When he dialed the number, somebody on the other end offered 1,000 yuan ($160) for every iPhone 6 shell he could provide.”
Apple hasn’t commented, but Foxconn, which reported the employee to police after investigating the missing parts, told the Wall Street Journal that it “expects its employees to follow its internal code of conduct.”