Apple is suing a former recycling partner for allegedly stealing and reselling over 100,000 products it was hired to disassemble and recycle.
From 2015 to 2018, Apple replied on GEEP Canada as one of their partners to recover valuable materials from their iPhones, iPads and Watches. However, their partnership with Apple was explicitly supposed to be for this extraction, not reselling the devices as GEEP allegedly did.
“At least 11,766 pounds of Apple devices left GEEP’s premises without being destroyed – a fact that GEEP itself confirmed,” stated Apple.
Apple discovered that the products had not been recycled as they learned that some of the devices were still accessing the Internet. After checking the serial numbers on the devices sent to GEEP, reportedly about 18% of those devices (103,845) were active on carrier networks and the number may be much higher as non-LTE devices would not show up.
The Verge wrote a feature just last year about how Total Reclaim, a recycling firm, advertised ethical recycling practices but in reality was sending off hazard waste overseas without following regulations.