updated 07:05 am EST, Wed January 18, 2012
Canadians hit by clay iPad scam
Canadians have been hit by up to 24 known cases of iPad 2s being sold substituted with clay at major retailers in Vancouver, including Future Shop, Best Buy, Walmart, and London Drugs. According to CTV News, customers were sold boxes that looked like new. However, while perfectly sealed, they were given weight by clay, where in at least one instance, a charger was also replaced with clay.
From what has been ascertained so far, the iPad 2's were purchased with cash, only for the tablet to be removed and then repackaged with the fraudulent contents and sealed. As the iPads looked as though they had not been opened, store staff accepted the returns and gave the scammers their cash back while they conveniently also made off with the tablets.
One customer, Dayna Chabot purchased what she thought was a 32GB iPad 2 on January 5 from the Walmart in Langley, not far from Vancouver. She and her boyfriend said that they were absolutely shocked when they made their discovery.
"It was all sealed properly and everything. It was the shape of an iPad. They even had a piece of clay where the charger went and everything. Like, they knew what they were doing," she said.
"I understood that it could have easily been [construed that we] did it and went back [to the store]. But they were really good about it at Walmart. They were all just kind of baffled," she explained.
Chabot was given a full refund within 20 minutes, after first speaking with the store manager.
Apple is said to be aware of the issue and is involved in the investigation although has not offered any further comment at this time. Vancouver police said that the matter will be handled in store until such a time as the retailers affected seek police assistance.
London Drugs says that it is now opening returned items. The same strategy has also been adopted by Future Shop and Best Buy. Walmart, however, has said that it will not change its returns policy at this time. [via The Verge]