Thieves steal 7,000 Wii Us worth $2.28m from a Seattle airport

By on December 19, 2012, 6:00 PM

A couple million dollars worth of Wii U consoles were stolen at an airport this weekend. Speaking with ABC News, a police officer said the thieves drove two large diesel trucks into Seattle Air Cargo where a Nintendo distribution site is located. From there, the crew worked together to load the trucks with cargo from the warehouse using forklifts.

The thieves took 64 pallets worth of product, with each pallet holding over one hundred consoles. The King County Sheriff's Office has confirmed that around half of the devices were white basic units ($300 each at retail) and the other half were black deluxe models ($350 each). With 7,000 consoles swiped, that's a rough value of $2.28 million.

Those responsible for the theft remain at large and police have little information about them. Investigators wouldn't comment on whether they suspected the heist to be an inside job. For now, they're trying to find the vehicles involved. The above-mentioned semi-trailer trucks reportedly have the word "McKinney" printed on the side. Police are also looking for a Seattle Air Cargo box truck that the thieves took.

Naturally, they're also on the lookout for suspiciously cheap Wii Us being sold privately on sites like eBay and Craigslist, which you can report by calling the King County Sheriff's office at 206-296-3311. "If we don't get any tips ahead of time, it will be the selling of these consoles that will lead to their capture," an officer told ABC News. "It's gonna be pretty hard to hide 7,000 Wii game consoles," the officer added.

This theft follows a month after crooks stole two pallets of Apple's iPad mini by similar means: they rolled into the JFK International Airport with a semi, grabbed a forklift and helped themselves. They made off with nearly 3,600 tablets worth around $1.5 million, though it could've been worse as the thieves left behind three pallets after being spooked by an airport worker who returned unexpectedly.




User Comments: 20

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misor misor said:

"the crew worked together to load the trucks with cargo from the warehouse using forklifts."

so the thieves knew when the wii arrives, used the forklifts available, and drove away using thecargo van available.

it's an inside job, as the article says.

btw, the abc article did not mention if any of the warehouse guards or delivery men are held for questioning.

and no mention of a surveillance video in the warehouse?

I smell a rat.

Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

Anyone want to buy a Wii U? Christmas blowout sale, only $199 for a basic, and $249 for a deluxe. Get them while they're HOT!

1 person liked this | soldier1969 soldier1969 said:

Really? who the F wants those, no one I know. Take something worth something next time ******.

bexwhitt said:

As a man with fairly small hands the WIIu controller looks like an rsi disaster,

2 people like this | Wendig0 Wendig0, TechSpot Paladin, said:

To me it looks like Leap Frog raped Fisher Price, and the Wii U is its bastard offspring.

davislane1 davislane1 said:

Take something worth something next time ******.

$2.28 million isn't worth anything? Either you're an algorithm programer for Goldman Sachs, and therefore six zeros is nothing, or hyperinflation just came out of left field. Either way, I'd like to know where the worth-while money is, because I thought these guys made off like bandits?

Trillionsin Trillionsin said:

Take something worth something next time ******.

$2.28 million isn't worth anything? Either you're an algorithm programer for Goldman Sachs, and therefore six zeros is nothing, or hyperinflation just came out of left field. Either way, I'd like to know where the worth-while money is, because I thought these guys made off like bandits?

There is no way these thieves are going to try to sell all these for retail prices. These Wii U's are practically useless, unless they want to risk getting caught. As they mentioned they are traceable. Just like any other dealer of illegal products... they are going to get a wholesale value and most likely be done with it. Luckily, maybe, they will get $1m if they want to put the work into it.... hopefully they had plans after they stole them, and a buyer lined up.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

It wasn't me! I just HAPPEN to live and work near the airport.....

psycros psycros said:

"the crew worked together to load the trucks with cargo from the warehouse using forklifts."

so the thieves knew when the wii arrives, used the forklifts available, and drove away using thecargo van available.

it's an inside job, as the article says.

btw, the abc article did not mention if any of the warehouse guards or delivery men are held for questioning.

and no mention of a surveillance video in the warehouse?

I smell a rat.

The article doesn't actually say that - speed reading will get you every time. But yes, in all likelihood it WAS an inside job. And eventually it will come out that it was Russians or Mexicans who were hired with minimal background checks (if any).

NTAPRO NTAPRO said:

Sell for $250 - 280. That isn't suspicious at all xD

Darth Shiv Darth Shiv said:

Take something worth something next time ******.

$2.28 million isn't worth anything? Either you're an algorithm programer for Goldman Sachs, and therefore six zeros is nothing, or hyperinflation just came out of left field. Either way, I'd like to know where the worth-while money is, because I thought these guys made off like bandits?

They are only worth that much if that is what people will pay for them. Having 7000 unsold units in your garage would be completely worthless. You need to sell them for them to have value.

And besides, it's perspective. You could say they aren't worth $2.28 million as they were manufactured for much less than that.

treetops treetops said:

Tony Soprano strikes again.

Guest said:

Modern day robin hood for real. They gonna drop these lewts under trees of the poor.

Happy Holidays!

Guest said:

Well at least it's a good time of the year to unload alot product..Legal or illegal..Plus no camera's

in the warehouse and loading dock..Unless they aren't saying..

Guest said:

They should Give a Few to Toys for Tots...Help out a some kids for Christmas..Still have plenty to make some money..:D

Sarcasm Sarcasm said:

Cant wait to see them bring these to Gamestop and get offered $228k for their trade in. (This is a joke people... relax)

Guest said:

Didn't this same type of thing happen recently in NY/NJ with Sony stuff and it didn't take long to find the inside guy.

Tygerstrike said:

See the major problem I see with this, is that it had to be a inside job. Ive worked security. You normally have timed rounds. Obviously either the security guards were asleep, or in on it. Second, ppl talk. No matter how hard someone is trying to pass themselves off as someone else, when its a smoke break or a coffee break ppl will chit chat. That being said, there is probabily a ton of personal information that would lead to the criminals getting caught. Third.....really? Wii U? There isnt the same level of demand for the Wii U as there was for the Wii. Maybe 5 years ago if they had stolen that much in Wii units they would have made some serious cash. As it is, they will prolly sell them at half price just to move them and make something. Which in turn will prolly lead to them getting arrested. Is it me or is the general criminal element just that stupid anymore? Seems like all these heists arent as well thought out as they could be.

Guest said:

"Really? who the F wants those, no one I know. Take something worth something next time ******."

--> the 'smartest' comment I've ever heard..

avoidz avoidz said:

Those things look damn uncomfortable. I get aching hands after only a short time playing my PSP.

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