Police raid downtown jewelry store in probe into stolen cellular phones

February 20, 1997|By Peter Hermann | Peter Hermann,SUN STAFF

Baltimore police have raided a downtown jewelry shop as part of a two-year investigation into stolen and cloned cellular phones, and investigators said yesterday employees of the store are under investigation by a grand jury.

On Feb. 7, city police searched King Tut Jewelers in the 300 block of N. Howard St. after an undercover Bell Atlantic investigator said he bought a stolen cellular phone there. The investigator said he was told to go to another business across the street to have it cloned -- reprogrammed with a stolen phone number.

During the raid, police said, officers seized 13 cellular phones -- five reprogrammed with stolen numbers -- four cameras, two laptop computers, two sets of binoculars, one stenography machine and one camera lens belonging to the University of Maryland.

Police said the Bell Atlantic investigator had his phone cloned at Inner City Records, across the street from King Tut. A raid of that business, also Feb. 7, turned up one cloned cellular phone and 36 pirated albums, investigators said.

Police said a grand jury is also investigating people at that store.

The record store was raided July 11 for allegedly selling pirated videos and recordings; that case is pending in Circuit Court.

Pub Date: 2/20/97

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