Or Continue to Thread: [Q] IMEI Issues
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16th August 2014, 11:13 AM   |  #1  
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Could somebody point me to an actual law that says it is illegal in the USA and and that it could be, for example, up to 20 years imprisonment or a $5,000 fine, if I changed my IMEI from my broken Verizon device to my unbroken Straighttalk device?

This is a debate that a friend of mine have been going through, and well I can't seem to find the correct answer, not even on here. Everybody is saying it is illegal on XDA, but nobody has actually posted a link to an actual law, just this bill that was submitted into congress, which is not really the answer, it's a bill, where is it shown that it has been already passed along with the penalty?

Here is an example of my isue, just recently bought a phone from Irulu, Chinese phone. It has no IMEI number but when I dial #66# says to write IMEI number. Now everybody is saying it is ilegal to change your IMEI number, but how do you get an IMEI munber if you don't have one? Do I call, for example, T-Mobile and they will give me one? SOme companies even want the serial number along with the IMEI number, well my serial number is something like "0123456789ABCDEF", now how does that fly with a company?

Also, everybody is saying it is illegal to change the IMEI number according to this bill, which is a bill introduced by to congress that, unless somebody point me in the right direction, has not been submitted into a actual law yet.

Also the bill says "This Act may be cited as the `Mobile Device Theft Deterrence Act of 2012". Okay, well my phone is not stolen and if you look closely at this part of the "Bill":

`(1) the term `manufacturer' means a person who has lawfully obtained the right to assign a mobile device identification number to a mobile device before the initial sale of the mobile device;

and then here:
`(d) Exception- Subsection (b) shall not apply to the manufacturer of a mobile device or a person who repairs or refurbishes a mobile device unless the manufacturer or person knows that the mobile device or part involved is stolen.'.

Okay now, I have two verizon phones and two AT&T phones, that I own, that are not stolen, all are broken, then I have a a ZTE merit phone that works just fine, but I do not want to go with straight talk because I live hour away from walmart, which is the only place to purchase minutes, unless you have a credit card, which I do not and I am not going to pay an extra $5 a month for a reloadable card just to put minutes on my phone.

So my question is, according to those two lines, I am refurbishing my phone, it is not stolen and I just want to transfer one IMEI number to another phone so that I can keep using the same service without going through the hassle of ordering another sim card or buying another phone when I have two here that work and four that do not.

I have seen a few closed threads with people getting really upset about this being brought up, pointing to this bill and assuming the person is asking because, if you read that bill, they want to do this with a stolen phone.
Last edited by bethnesbitt; 16th August 2014 at 11:17 AM. Reason: speled a word wrong