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iPhone 5 Release Date: iPhone 4 Prototype Sellers Avoid Jail

iPhone 5 Release Date: iPhone 4 Prototype Sellers Avoid Jail

The two men responsible for selling an unfinished model of the "iPhone 4" have avoided jail time, but will now serve two years of probation and 40 hours of community service for their crime.

Brian John Hogan, 22, and Sage Robert Wallower, 28, sold the prototype smartphone model to tech blog Gizmodo. Gray Powell, an employee of Apple, misplaced the smartphone at a Redwood City bar that was later taken by Brian and Sage. Once found, both men sold the device to Gizmodo for a reported sum of $5,000.

Gizmodo then proceeded to post up leaked photos and videos of the next "iPhone," which happened to be the model they previously purchased. This news reached the Internet before the official unveiling of Apple's "iPhone 4."

A few days later, police went out and seized a total of four computers and two servers from Gizmodo's Jason Chen. The police warrant noted that they were looking for property that was: used as the means of committing a felony; or tends to show that a felony has been committed, or that a particular person has committed a felony.

Gawker Media and Gizmodo then voluntarily agreed to turn over all relevant documents to authorities in exchange for having the warrant voided.

John and Sage recently agreed to a plea deal in court. Both men will each pay Apple $250 in restitution fees, plus a separate, undetermined fine. These fines plus the probation and community service hours are now required of both men.

Steve Wagstaffe, San Mateo County District Attorney, reportedly requested that the two men should receive five days in jail, but the judge decided against it. No charges have been brought up against Gizmodo, though.

Former Gizmodo editor Brian Lam detailed his feelings on the whole ordeal on his personal blog: "I just wanted to say that I wish things happened differently. I probably should have quit right after the first story was published for several different reasons. I didn't know how to say that without throwing my team under the bus, so I didn't. Now I've learned it's better to lose a job I don't believe in any more than to do it well and keep it just for that sake."

Reports of another stolen "iPhone" model have surfaced. No further details have emerged on this occurrence, however.

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