A Call For Help

Shops that stay open around the clock are traditionally associated with life's basic necessities — bread, say, or gasoline. But over the past three years in Prague, a different kind of convenience store has mushroomed. Specializing in the resale of mobile phones, these outlets offer not only 24-hour service, but inviting price tags, with the bulk of their handsets in the $100 range. Police believe most of the phones are stolen, but complicated Czech proof-of-ownership laws render them almost powerless to prosecute. And in a country where almost 11,000 cell phones were reported stolen in the first eight months of last...

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