17 people charged in a string of Apple store robberies

Suspects allegedly rushed retail stores and grabbed display products.

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Lucy Nicholson / Reuters
Lucy Nicholson / Reuters

A number of individuals have been arrested in conjunction with a series of Apple store robberies that resulted in the theft of over $1 million worth of devices. The California Attorney General's office said in a statement on Thursday that seven were arrested earlier in the week, another suspect was in custody and nine others had been charged with the crime. Since then, at least two additional individuals have been arrested. In a string of robberies, groups rushed retail stores, grabbed products on display and left in just a few seconds.

"Organized retail thefts cost California business owners millions and expose them to copycat criminals," said Attorney General Xavier Becerra. "Ultimately, consumers pay the cost of this merchandise hijacking. We will continue our work with local law enforcement authorities to extinguish this mob mentality and prosecute these criminals to hold them accountable."

Oakland Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick described those accused as being part of a "large criminal ring." The crimes are said to have taken place across 19 counties in California and the suspects have been charged with conspiracy to commit grand theft.

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