22,500 LG G2's stolen in truck theft

A truck containing 22,500 LG G2’s was stolen while the driver left it unattended during a toilet break.

The phones were expected to reach Sprint before they went missing in Louisville, Kentucky on Thursday. CNET reports the vehicle was stolen when the driver went for a toilet break at around 6:30 pm, leaving it unattended. When he returned, the vehicle along with the devices were missing.

LG’s high-end Android device successor to the Optimus G and Optimus G Pro packs a myriad of features including a powerful Qualcomm Snapdragon 800 SoC, 1080p display and an optically stabilized camera. With features like these, it’s no wonder the phones were stolen.

This is not the first time LG’s flagship phone has caused a dilemma. In August, at least 20 victims were compensated during a G2 giveaway after makeshift weapons were used to acquire the phones. The incident could delay Sprint’s launch of its own version of the phone early next month.

Police in Illinois and Indiana were contacted about the incident. The FBI is also investigating.

Source: CNET

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if the theft was planned then they knew what they were getting in which case they also know where to get rid of them which is most likely to some 3rd world nation with limited telco operations and mass corruption

If this planned out, they can fake/wipe/change ESN

This reminds me of the CPU/RAM thefts that were dominate in the 90s. A lot of 'vendors' and employees working for vendors would launder the parts to low profile/local OEMs.

Randolph said,
Did someone say strip the PCB board for gold? What?

Yes. Why not? Just need a bath of hydrochloric and nitric acid to dissolve.

Those phones are practically useless once stolen. Sprint knows their ESNs and won't activate them, other CDMA carriers won't activate phones from other carriers. The phones themselves have very crippled GSM implementations for roaming only. I guess they can sell it for parts at least minus the logic board....

Aren't those phones locked to a network ? I mean they can now easily be banned from network using their IMEI number right ??

One could get caught right away activating the phone ??

Since they're Sprint phones they can't be used on other networks anyway. Shipments like these always come with very strict IMEI lists so they're just all useless now. If anyone attempts to activate one of these phones they'll know where to find them right away.

Your assuming that every telco world wide plays by the same rules this is just not so its not that hard to reprogram a phone for another network

the feds will trace the gps of each phone once customers buy them, find out where they bought them from then find out where the shop got them from and repeat the process until they find the thief. I highly doubt the thief will get away with this crime for more than 9 months.

I'm sure they know the serial numbers of the missing phones, and each phone has a GPS... The person who ends up with it might not have stolen it but they can never bring it in for repairs, and those who are oblivious might be questioned about who they got it from if they did.

Someone I know got a 360 from a consignment store and when they brought it in for repairs from RRoD they never got it back! lol

if they are sprint phones, are they automatically bad esn for activation?

16 million would be hard to make right away..... I would move out and sell on craigslist or ebay selling 1 unit at a time.

link6155 said,
Non of the phones are set up to a google account, so nope

If only the driver had left his work phone in the truck, or if only they had set up a demo device which they knew the google account for.

MidTxWRX said,

If only the driver had left his work phone in the truck, or if only they had set up a demo device which they knew the google account for.

If only technology had progressed to such a point where these companies could equipped a truck carrying $16 million worth of electronics with a GPS device.....Oh wait....

If they're smart, there's an inventory of IMEI's they can blacklist.

MidTxWRX said,

If only the driver had left his work phone in the truck, or if only they had set up a demo device which they knew the google account for.

no...if only the stupid driver didn't leaves keys in the ignition of a track carrying 22.500 devices that cost $600 or so each.

Well he knows he's fired. They may even seek some charges too. May sue him too for neglegance

TechieXP said,
no...if only the stupid driver didn't leaves keys in the ignition of a track carrying 22.500 devices that cost $600 or so each.

Well he knows he's fired. They may even seek some charges too. May sue him too for neglegance

Well I for one doubt hes fired. This has to have been an insured freight. Either why would you haul this much worth in money?

He might get a huge shout out from his boss though.. a negative one ofcourse

but if hes on the job for... ~ very long? and then this happens the one time.. I wouldn't think he'd get fired.

Why would you haul this much? What else are they meant to do, make them in the stores they're going to be sold at?

This isn't some uncommon thing. Those semis you see rolling down the highway each day, they're loaded full of things that cost money.

The driver probably will get fired, insured or not, what a complete ****up, and how bad does it look for his company? I bet LG will never use that shipping company again.

I doubt whoever took the truck even knew what was on board.

Geranium_Z__NL said,

Well I for one doubt hes fired. This has to have been an insured freight. Either why would you haul this much worth in money?

He might get a huge shout out from his boss though.. a negative one ofcourse

but if hes on the job for... ~ very long? and then this happens the one time.. I wouldn't think he'd get fired.

If you smoke in your office and it gets set on fire, I am sure insurance will cover it. What does that have to do with getting fired? He left a truck with expensive stuff idle with the keys for someone to steal it. Sounds like a setup to me anyways. However, I am sure many truckers leave their keys in their truck while they run into the store. However, many of them are independent and yes their insurance will cover the load. That doesn't mean he won't get fired.

rippleman said,
"goodfella's" come to mind on this one... almost $16 million full retail


Same here.......or the Sopranos....

DPyro said,
How are you gonna move $16 million in stolen merchandise?

They probably wont.

The phone's IMEI numbers will have all been blocked, so they won't work on any US network. The best they can hope for is shipping them to Europe or Asia, but that's be too easy to track.

What's probably going to happen is the handsets are going to be stripped for spares, and the remaining PCB bare boards are acid bathed to recover the gold.

The spares parts will be sold on and the gold used for false teeth.

sagum said,

They probably wont.

The phone's IMEI numbers will have all been blocked, so they won't work on any US network. The best they can hope for is shipping them to Europe or Asia, but that's be too easy to track.

What's probably going to happen is the handsets are going to be stripped for spares, and the remaining PCB bare boards are acid bathed to recover the gold.

The spares parts will be sold on and the gold used for false teeth.

The IMEI can be cleaned or changed by those who know how.

adrynalyne said,

The IMEI can be cleaned or changed by those who know how.

Not for Sprint it can't. Sprint and Verizon use whitelists for their network. So if you change the IMEI and ESN you have to change them to ones you took from donor phones.

mrp04 said,

Not for Sprint it can't. Sprint and Verizon use whitelists for their network. So if you change the IMEI and ESN you have to change them to ones you took from donor phones.


So take them from donor phones like you said.

rippleman said,
"goodfella's" come to mind on this one... almost $16 million full retail

That's funny. The first thing I thought was "sopranos" lol

mrp04 said,

Not for Sprint it can't. Sprint and Verizon use whitelists for their network. So if you change the IMEI and ESN you have to change them to ones you took from donor phones.

Easy to do, for a few hundred dollars you can get a tool to do it and plz dont say you cant cause I see this on a daily basis

Fairly accurate really. They'll sell a few or trade them to low level dopey idiots for money/drugs/services, the rest get stripped for parts and/or sent overseas.

Personally, I'd be suspect that they target that truck unless the driver was in on it. Probably a crime of opportunity and now they have a smack load of phones

Also the IMEI's might not be blocked as Sprint won't have scanned each box to log the IMEI. The supplier might have the list though. It's possible these are "clean" devices.

adrynalyne said,


So take them from donor phones like you said.

22,500 of them? Not going to be an easy task. Plus you'll need to use donor phones that have LTE capability (with both an ESN and a matching IMEI) if you want the phone to connect to LTE on Sprint.

DPyro said,
How are you gonna move $16 million in stolen merchandise?

Stock yards, :-) I'll bet the cops are already hitting up flea markets in the area. They're a big thing here in eastern Kentucky, and I'm sure Louisville is no different, it's only about a 2 1/2 hour drive from here. People go to stock yards / flea markets here to buy everything from fruits and vegetables to live stock to guns, all from just regular Joe citizen types who pull their pickup truck into the lot with their wares in the back, drop the tailgate and pay the land-owner a $5 fee to set up. I've seen state cops hitting up the gun sellers a time or two checking serial numbers if one was reported stolen, and at a few of the flea markets there are some pretty large electronics tables, I'm sure the cops will be checking them out.