Paterson police warn of iPhone con on Craigslist

April 7, 2011 2:42:23 PM PDT
What would you do to get an iPhone for possibly hundreds of dollars off the regular price?

Before you answer, consider what Benny Loga said to us.

"Don't respond to no ads. If it sounds to good to be true, don't do it," he said.

It's a tough lesson to learn for several people who responded to ads on Craigslist to buy or to sell the iPhone, and then agreed to meet the interested party along Haledon Avenue near 4th and 5th Streets in North Paterson. Instead, they ended up facing a gun.

"When the victim would show up, they would rob them at gunpoint," Det. Robert Reyes of Paterson police said.

The victims have been robbed by 2 or 3 men in their late teens or 20s. About 5 people have fallen victim to the lure in the past two weeks. They took the chance to meet a stranger in an unfamiliar place, bringing with them cash or the phone, and then being robbed.

"Really, it's not surprising. People want to make money, people want to get money," resident Keith Gerard said.

"I wouldn't by anything online unless they were going to ship it to me. To meet a stranger, that's crazy," Keith Combs said.

No one's been seriously injured in these robberies, but all of them involved a gun so look at what Paterson police are taking action.

They have posted a warning on Craigslist to beware of iPhone ads from Paterson, and there are many.

They're investigating, saying they've made progress, but they want to hear from anyone else who may have fallen victim.

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