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iPhone 4 Prototype Finder Gets Probation 334

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the finders-keepers-losers-send-you-to-prison dept.
think_nix writes "Brian Hogan, who found an iPhone 4 prototype last year which was sold to Gizmodo for $5,000, has been sentenced to one year of probation, 40 hours of community service, and a $250 fine. The District Attorney's office was asking for jailtime."
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iPhone 4 Prototype Finder Gets Probation

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  • Justice is served (Score:5, Informative)

    by infernalC (51228) <matthew.mellon@NOSpaM.google.com> on Wednesday October 12, 2011 @10:23AM (#37689904) Homepage Journal

    The right thing to do with something that isn't yours is not to pick it up and sell it. Duh. He will learn a lesson from this.

  • by Richard_at_work (517087) <richardprice@noSPAM.gmail.com> on Wednesday October 12, 2011 @10:47AM (#37690268)

    I think you need to actually review a lot of the understanding you are basing your comment on...

    One who finds lost property under circumstances which give him knowledge of or means of inquiry as to the true owner, and who appropriates such property to his own use, or to the use of another person not entitled thereto, without first making reasonable and just efforts to find the owner and to restore the property to him, is guilty of theft.

    CAL. PEN. CODE 485 : California Code - Section 485

    http://www.shouselaw.com/appropriation-lost-property.html [shouselaw.com]

  • by Revotron (1115029) on Wednesday October 12, 2011 @11:06AM (#37690570)
    I highly doubt you're educated in any form of law, but luckily I am, so let me break it down for you.

    "Unlawful taking" is actually a crime and is exactly what it sounds like - taking something that you don't own, with the intention of making it yours. And it stands quite well legally that his intent to sell the device constituted him making it his own property. Therefore, the selling of the unlawfully taken phone to a third party (a crime in and of itself) signifies the lack of intent to return the device to its owner.

    Oh, by the way, even if you're going to assume that the Apple employee left it there specifically so someone would find it, the fact that somebody did pick it up and take it as their own property to sell counts as Conversion, the legal definition of which is taking sole possession of something you have been given control over with no intent to return it. It's like embezzlement, but without money.

    The courts DO have rules. They're called laws. And everything I just explained to you IS the law.
  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Wednesday October 12, 2011 @11:06AM (#37690580)
    The DA has said no. Their contention is that Gizmodo crossed a line but they were in a very grey area in terms of journalistic rights because they did technically report on it. I think the DA would have won but the battle wasn't worth it.
  • Re:Justice is served (Score:3, Informative)

    by bell.colin (1720616) on Wednesday October 12, 2011 @12:57PM (#37692178)

    You haven't watched politicians on the house/senate floor (or debates in general) have you? They behave exactly like 5 year olds. (kindergarten age is 5, not 6)

The first Rotarian was the first man to call John the Baptist "Jack." -- H.L. Mencken

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