In at least ten separate incidents reported by CTV News, people purchasing an Apple iPad 2 from branches of Future Shop and its parent, Best Buy, were left shocked upon opening the packaging when they found a large lump of modelling clay in place of the Apple tablet.
At his family’s gift-opening gathering on Christmas Eve, conned customer Mark Sandhu was stunned when his wife opened her near-£400 gift, only to find what amounted to its weight in clay. At first his wife mistook the clay as a protective layer of, before realizing that was the only thing in the box.
Further investigation by CTV’s Steele On Your Side, a consumer affairs revealed that fraudsters had paid cash for a number of iPads, replaced them in their box with the modelling clay, resealed the boxes and returned them as new for a full refund.
Mr Sandhu contacted the television company as a last resort, after local authorities had refused to hear his side of the story when he tried to explain the situation at his local branch of Future Shop on Boxing Day.
“[The manager] made me feel like I’m trying to scam them out of $700,” he said. “I was the one getting scammed.”
Future Shop subsequently announced that at least nine more cases of this fraud had taken place in their other Vancouver branches, and that an investigation was underway. For their trouble, Mr and Mrs Sandhu received a full refund from Future Shop, along with a brand new iPad 2 as part of a full apology.