Customs Seizes 100 iPhone 6's at Airport

Barely out on the market, the iPhone 6 is a hot commodity - among smugglers, who are trying to bring them into Israel unnoticed.

Moshe Cohen,

 iPhone
iPhone
Reuters

Barely out on the market, the iPhone 6 is a hot commodity, with fans of Apple products waiting on line for hours for their chance to buy one. If getting one is a challenge, getting 100 is a Herculean task – but it apparently wasn't beyond the abilities of one smuggler, who tried to surreptitiously bring 100 of the devices into Israel last week.

Already on the first day they went on sale, an Israeli tried to bring in four of the devices on a flight from London, officials said. Most smugglers try to bring between one and three iPhone 6's in their hand luggage, and there have been many incidents of attempted smuggling in recent weeks, officials added.

The Tax Authority, the parent body of the customs officials who check luggage and cargo coming through Ben Gurion Airport, said that it was just the latest and largest attempt to bring the devices into Israel. The iPhone 6, the latest edition of the coveted smartphone, was announced about a month ago. It is not due to go on sale in Israel until at least December. Apple importer iDigital has not announced a date for the device to go on sale here.

Although they are not on sale yet, approximate prices for the devices have already been announced, and they are substantially higher than the prices abroad. A fully-loaded iPhone 6+, for example, sells for $950 (NIS 3,500), while the devices are likely to cost between NIS 6,700 and NIS 8,000 initially. The import costs for smartphones is 35.7% - 15% purchase tax, 18% VAT, and 2.7% duty, for devices $200 and more – which the iPhone 6 series clearly is.








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