Want to get your hands on a glitzy new iPad Mini? You have a few options: Walk into any Apple retail store, place an online order, or — if you're feeling daring and immoral — steal a truckload full of the gadgets from one of America's busiest airports.
In a caper eerily reminiscent of the central scheme in the 1990 mobster flick Goodfellas, two savvy thieves allegedly managed to seize $1.5 million worth of the coveted new tablet from New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport earlier this week. According to the New York Post, some 3,600 iPads just arrived from China were taken from the same cargo building that was the site of the famous 1978 Lufthansa heist featured in the celebrated Scorsese film. (In the Lufthansa heist, one of the largest in American history, thieves absconded with $5 million in cash and $900,000 worth of jewelry.) Witnesses say the iPad robbers pulled up in a white tractor trailer with the name "CEVA" painted on the side.
The crooks struck shortly before midnight on Monday and used one of the airport’s own forklifts to load two pallets of the tablet computers into a truck, according to law-enforcement sources… They might have gotten more, but the thieves drove off leaving three more pallets of the Apple tablets behind after they were challenged by an airport worker returning from dinner.
Law enforcement officials suspect the iPad theft was an inside job and are currently questioning airport workers with polygraph tests.
The loss, however, is likely "meaningless to Apple's holiday sales," says Dan Bigman at Forbes, even if a few thousand consumers across the country have to wait a bit longer to start swiping the surfaces of their new tablets. As for the suspected crooks, "fencing the stolen goods might be difficult," says Darrell Etherington at TechCrunch, "since posting an ad on Craigslist for 3,600 iPads might look a little suspicious."