The two men that reportedly sold a lost iPhone 4 prototype to tech blog Gizmodo last year have pleaded no contest to misdemeanor theft of lost property. Brian John Hogan, 22, and Sage Robert Wallower, 28, were each sentenced to one year probation, 40 hours of community service and $250 in damages to Apple.
The story took the tech world by storm last year when Engadget posted photos of what they said was the next iPhone nearly two months before it was unveiled. Apparently the staff passed on buying the phone which later ended up in the hands of Gizmodo editor Jason Chen. The device was allegedly found on a floor at a bar in Redwood City, California and later sold to Gizmodo for $5,000. Gizmodo did a full “review” of the device complete with photos and video footage.
The phone turned out to be the real thing and Apple feverishly wanted it back. The device was returned but Apple moved further and obtained a search warrant for the editor’s home. Police seized multiple computers and servers during the raid.
Chen and Gizmodo were eventually cleared of any wrongdoing, although there has been some fallout since the incident. Gizmodo had their Apple press privileges permanently revoked and Chen no longer works for the blog.
Hogan and Wallower were allowed to keep the $5,000 that they earned for selling the prototype, although that money has likely been spent on attorney fees and other legal-related expenditures.