A man recently got arrested by Delhi customs officials for trying to smuggle in over 100 iPhone X units. He was flying in from Dubai and was brought in for interrogation and baggage search at the Indira Gandhi International Airport after authorities received a tip-off.
The 53-year-old man is now under arrest under Section 104 of the Customs Act. PTI reports that the iPhone X units in question are worth over Rs 85.61 lakh, a huge sum to just be carrying around. There have been incidents of such large-scale smuggling happening before.
For instance, 7 youths were caught red-handed with 182 iPhone 6S units back in 2015 at the very same airport. They’d tried to bring in the handsets from Hong Kong and Singapore on separate flights. This new incident is in stark contrast to that, since 1 man decided to sneak in 100 iPhone X units at once.
There’s always been a thriving grey market for iPhones in India. The smartphones are more expensive here than most other markets, especially after customs and import tax hikes made the phones even more costly. The 64GB iPhone X itself goes for Rs 95390, while the 256GB model pushes the rate to Rs 108930.
Chinese smugglers recently came up with an innovative way to slip past customs officials. They rigged up drones to transport refurbished iPhones from Hong Kong to Shenzhen. The operation managed to smuggle 15000 units under the cover of night, with over 500 million yuan ($79.8 million) worth of units being sneaked in overall.