iPhone 4 Prototype Finder & Seller Both Charged: Gizmodo Cleared

With non stop talk about the upcoming Apple iPhone 5, we thought we would try and give your mind a quick rest by switching your attention to another bit of Apple iPhone related news. Back in 2010 some of you may remember what many dubbed “iPhonegate”, where a prototype of the then unreleased iPhone 4 was lost in a bar, found and sold. It has been revealed that the finders and sellers have both been charged.

iPhone 4 Prototype Finder & Seller Both Charged: Gizmodo Cleared

The lucky or in this case, unlucky man who found the first ever iPhone 4 handset is being punished handling stolen goods and misappropriation of lost property, Tech Radar reports. Brian Hogan could not believe his luck when he stumbled upon a never seen before iPhone handset, pocketing it and with the intention to sell it. An Apple employee had somehow managed to leave the prototype in a bar, which aroused very serious suspicion.

22 year old Hogan worked with another man to sell the smartphone, 28 year old Safe Wallower who offered the finding to technology websites in exchange for cash. The iPhone 4 was sold to Gizmodo for $5000, which is around 10 times the retail price. The phone was not used for a desperate man’s personal use though, of course images and all kinds of information were leaked on the phone, premature to its highly anticipated launch.

The image above is the one that Gizmodo leaked on their website, showing the design difference between the new and old iPhone. Similarly this year, images of the iPhone 5 have appeared online but it is not clear if they are genuine or not. We yesterday saw a YouTube user posted a video of himself browsing Apple’s German website, viewed a leaked page which shows the iPhone 5 and all its specs. The masses all agree the video is fake after several irregularities in the video.

Gizmodo reportedly ripped the iPhone 4 apart after taking pictures, to see all of its guts and leak them online also. The tech site’s former editor Jason Chen was expected to face charges for illegally buying the prototype but the District Attorney’s Office decided not to bring any punishment forwards. Apple may feel aggrieved as they are always on the war path, dragging wrongdoers into the courtroom on frequent occasions. We saw yesterday how Motorola has been added to their hit list, after their Xoom tablet allegedly infringes on the iPad.

The law has ruled that Chen did not commit any crimes, although we are sure Apple will beg to differ. Hogan and Wallower however face a year in a county jail and fines of up to $1000 if found guilty of the chargers, Computer World reports that both men are scheduled to be arraigned on August 25th. It will be interesting to see what kind of punishment they get, considering Chen got off Scott free. Let us know what kind of punishment, if any, should be dished out by leaving a comment.