WEST HARTFORD -- Three men, one of them a UPS driver, were arrested in connection with what police called an elaborate iPhone theft ring last week.
West Hartford Police said fraudulent cell phone accounts were set up using the address and personal information of a West Hartford residents. When the iPhones were delivered to those addresses, some were stolen by the suspects following the UPS truck, according to police. Police said some packages were declared delivered by a UPS driver but, in fact, were not. That led to the arrest of at least one UPS driver who police believe was involved.
Police said over 200 phones valued at over $177,000 are missing. Since May, over 360 phones were ordered to the addresses in West Hartford and 122 are still missing.
The UPS driver, David Bagot, 52, of Hartford, was charged with larceny, and conspiracy to commit identity theft. He was held on $75,000 bond, and is expected to appear in court on October 16.
Ramone Sooman, 27, of West Hartford, was charged with conspiracy to commit larceny, and conspiracy to commit identity theft. He was held on $25,000 bond, and is expected to appear in court on October 6.
Andre Duffus, 27, of Plantation, Fl., was charged with larceny, and conspiracy to commit identity theft. He was held on $75,000 bond, and is expected to appear in court on October 16.
Police are working to identify the 122 victims of identity theft
Police said UPS is cooperating in the investigation. Officials said the fraud ring is believed to be based out of Florida and has struck in multiple states.
Last Thursday, as police watched two addresses for an expected fraudulent delivery of iPhones, they saw a transaction between the UPS driver and two other men. All three were arrested on site.
If you have any information or believe you were the victim of a fraudulent cell phone delivery, please call Det. Andrew Wamester at (860) 570-8883 and reference case #16-42654.
In a statement to FOX 61 a spokesperson for Sprint-Nextel says:
Sprint identified an irregular pattern of activity and alerted law enforcement. We’re working with them to help in their investigation. Beyond that would be inappropriate to comment as it’s an active investigation.
A spokesman for UPS tells FOX 61:
UPS does utilize a background check process on all of its employees because of the nature of the business we are in. I cannot share security measures beyond that because sharing them could compromise those very measures. Our customers’ shipping information is not shared and the integrity of our people is of paramount importance to us. We do not tolerate dishonesty.