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Police arrest five over mobile phone blag

9,649 Samsung A300 phones recovered

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Five men were arrested yesterday after the recovery of thousands of phones taken during one of Britain's biggest ever mobile phone theft.

Officers arrested five suspects after a raid last night on an address in West London. They recovered 9,649 Samsung A300 phones from the premises and a nearby parked van.

The mobiles are among a haul of 23,000 phones, worth an estimated £4.2 million, stolen from a freight-forwarding warehouse in Hayes, Middlesex last Sunday. That leaves more than 13,000 phones still missing.

None of the phones had a SIM card inside them and have reportedly been deactivated using the international serial numbers programmed into each handset, though Reg readers have expressed doubts about whether this was possible.

The authorities were concerned that the phones might be reprogrammed by the gang and sold overseas, or on the black market here.

Samsung is offering a £200,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of the mobiles.

Police are continuing to question the arrested men about the crime. ®

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