Employee kills himself over missing iPhone prototype

A young employee of Chinese contract manufacturer Foxconn committed suicide after being accused over a missing iPhone prototype, according to mainland press reports.

The staff member, Sun Danyong, 25, threw himself off the 12th floor of the building in southern China on July 16, the Southern Metropolitan Daily newspaper reported.

The missing phone was one of 16 prototypes held by the Taiwanese-owned company, which is Apple’s prime iPhone manufacturer. Sun was reportedly responsible for shipping the prototypes back to Apple, which had received just 15 devices.  

Sun, a graduate who had been with the company since last year, had been under investigation by the company’s security department over the missing phone and had sent a distressed text to a friend just before he died.

Sina.com website said Sun’s suicide had spawned speculation online that Sun had been beaten or detained by Foxconn staff. Foxconn said in a statement that it “would not allow any person or department to take matters beyond the limit of the law.”

In a statement issued yesterday, Foxconn commercial chief Li Jinming apologized to Sun’s family and said the incident reflected “the inadequacies of Foxconn internal management.”