Elmhurst Apple Store worker buys nearly $1M in gift cards with fake debit cards

apple store
Photo courtesy of Flickr/Matt Buchanan

This Apple genius used his computer smarts to steal big.

A Cambria Heights man was charged with allegedly making off with almost $1 million in Apple gift cards, according to Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown.

Ruben Profit, 24, worked at an Apple Store in Elmhurst’s Queens Center mall when he used his tech knowledge to re-code debit, prepaid and gift cards to purchase $977,700 in Apple gift cards.

Profit begin working at the retail store when it opened in July and allegedly used Visa and American Express cards between Aug. 2 and Oct. 15 to purchase several Apple gift cards from the store. Police found 51 Visa and American Express cards, whose magnetic strips were re-coded with credit card information, during his arrest.

The perpetrator also told detectives that he received $200 from an individual for every Apple gift card worth $2,000. In addition to the Visa and American Express cards, detectives found seven Apple gift cards worth $2,000 when they arrested him.

Apple began receiving charge-back notifications on the gift cards Profit purchased on Oct. 15, which tipped them off. Charge-backs are purchases made on credit or debit cards that are not paid by the credit or debit card companies because they are deemed to be fraudulent.

Profit was charged with second-degree grand larceny, first-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument and third-degree criminal possession of stolen property and faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted. He was ordered held on $20,000 bail and was ordered to return to court on Nov. 10.