A Mr. Tsai may spend the next ten years in jail if he is found guilty of breach of trust — in this case, stealing iPhone 5 and 5s units from testing labs and selling them in the open market.
The defendant was a former senior manager at Foxconn, Apple’s top assembly partner for the iPhone, and was identified only as Tsai. He was indicted on Friday.
It is alleged that from 2013 to 2014, he delegated eight subordinates to acquire non-retail testing phones (as opposed to iPhone 7 metal casing shells) and sell them to stores in Shenzhen, China. The New Taipei District claims that Tsai made US$1.56 million from the scheme, said to span over 5,700 units.
Foxconn notified Taiwanese authorities about Tsai after an internal audit.
Labor and graft issues have plagued Foxconn, the largest contract technology products assembler in the world, over the years. Its massiveness doesn’t help but add to its perceived complacency: it has over one million employees on its payroll.