The Customs and Excise Department raided a phone store on Monday for allegedly selling second hand phones as brand new models.

The department received complaints from a customer two months ago after he bought an iPhone 6 from the store in Sin Tat Plaza in Mong Kok. It was discovered to be a second-hand phone after the customer checked its serial number, Apple Daily reported.

An undercover agent then bought a iPhone 6 from the store, and after investigation, it was also found to be a second hand phone. The department raided the store at 2 pm on Monday and arrested a 20-year-old who said he was responsible for the store. The shop stands accused of breaking the Trade Descriptions Ordinance.

File photo: Pixabay via hurk.

The department has confiscated six second hand iPhone 6 handsets.

The same store was prosecuted in August last year for selling second hand iPhone 5s, and passing off older phone models as iPhone 5s for sale, according to Apple Daily.

Francis Fong Po-kiu, honorary president of the Hong Kong Information Technology Federation, told the newspaper that when buying a new iPhone, customers should look to see if there were scratches on the handset and check the IMEI serial number of the phone on Apple’s official website.

He also suggested people should buy new phones at official stores and franchises.

Under the Trade Descriptions Ordinance, false trade descriptions, false, misleading or incomplete information and misstatements in respect of goods provided in the course of trade are prohibited.

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Kris Cheng

Kris Cheng is a Hong Kong journalist with an interest in local politics. His work has been featured in Washington Post, Public Radio International, Hong Kong Economic Times and others. He has a BSSc in Sociology from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Kris is HKFP's Editorial Director.