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Purchased what seems to be a stolen M3, DJI is aware, now looking for maintenance advice

J. Dub

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Purchased a M3 off Facebook marketplace. Met the seller. Did a very quick test drive. Paid via CashApp all was well.
It wasn't until I started googling & looking to upgrade to a RC Pro that I realized the seller forgot to unbind his account.
Contacted the seller via text message but no reply. Went back on Facebook and his profile is gone.
Posted here on MavicP and someone mentioned to reach out to DJI. Did so. DJI got back to me and stated they have contacted the original owner (after some days went by) & they stated the following:
"We have contacted the account owner, but we didn't receive positive feedback or authorization. We are unable to disclose the information on it or unbind it directly in respect of the privacy rules and regulations. We understand it must be frustrating to know the background of this product. To protect your benefit, we suggest contacting your seller for a refund or replacement service."

So to me, that reads like the Drone has been stolen from the original owner.

The strange part is, I can still fly this. Just like normal. I'm just stuck w/ this RC controller and can't upgrade to an RC pro since the M3 is bound to this controller.

So I don't have a paperweight. Which I guess is good but I am worried about:
1) Couldn't DJI just remotely turn this drone off so I can never take off if it is indeed stolen? And if so, why haven't they done that?
2) If I want to send this in for maintenance or a repair will they just keep it and not ship it back to me if it is stolen?

I make this thread in part because today I met w/ a local Mavic 3 owner. I tell him the story and I wanted to see if the slight glitchyness it displays ONLY when hovering is normal. Turns out his Mavic 3 is steady and doesn't glitch when hovering. Mine exhibits a glitch every 5 seconds or so as if it's having a hard time staying in place.

So if this M3 doesn't turn into a paperweight & I can't contact the true owner to give it to them, I'd like to send the drone off for maintenance to DJI but I'd hate for them to keep it & not ship it back.
What do I do in this instance?

I have contacted the local police but the officer that took my report later said after the report that there's nothing they can do in this case and there is nothing in their database that shows this drone as stolen.
 
The drone may or may not be reported stolen. The status of a drone is not solely determined where it is logged into a police database or not. Perhaps the drone is lost and the owner wants it back and if you said you were willing to contact the owner and return it, why not just send it to DJI and let DJI reach out to the owner for return instructions....or not. We just don't know all the facts.

If the drone is lost but the owner doesn't want it back (because maybe the insurance paid out) they are still under no obligation to unbind it. DJI won't unbind it against his will so all you can do is wait and see. DJI gave you their suggestion and you should heed their advice.
 
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The drone may or may not be reported stolen. The status of a drone is not solely determined where it is logged into a police database or not. Perhaps the drone is lost and the owner wants it back and if you said you were willing to contact the owner and return it, why not just send it to DJI and let DJI reach out to the owner for return instructions....or not. We just don't know all the facts.

If the drone is lost but the owner doesn't want it back (because maybe the insurance paid out) they are still under no obligation to unbind it. DJI won't unbind it against his will so all you can do is wait and see. DJI gave you their suggestion and you should heed their advice.
I'd love to heed their advice but their advice was to return it for a refund.
And unfortunately the guy I bought it from has gone ghost :(

True, I don't know what truly happened since DJI was vague in their email.
 
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I'd love to heed their advice but their advice was to return it for a refund.
And unfortunately the guy I bought it from has gone ghost :(

True, I don't know what truly happened since DJI was vague in their email.
My point was DJI suggested that you dispose of the drone because while it may be viable and flyable today, it likely will not tomorrow for whatever reason, I dunno.
 
So I don't have a paperweight. Which I guess is good but I am worried about:
1) Couldn't DJI just remotely turn this drone off so I can never take off if it is indeed stolen? And if so, why haven't they done that?
2) If I want to send this in for maintenance or a repair will they just keep it and not ship it back to me if it is stolen?
Whoever logged in to the account the drone is using may have stayed logged in but DJI logs you out after a certain number of days. SO unless you already have the account info your drone won't fly for to much longer.
DJI will never give someone else a customers personal info so at best they would have asked you to send in the drone and bricked the account info of the previous owner--Thats If it was reported lost TO DJI and replaced Through Warranty. If it is on DJI's replaced list. Then YES if you send it in for repair they will keep it
 
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Whoever logged in to the account the drone is using may have stayed logged in but DJI logs you out after a certain number of days. SO unless you already have the account info your drone won't fly for to much longer.
DJI will never give someone else a customers personal info so at best they would have asked you to send in the drone and bricked the account info of the previous owner--Thats If it was reported lost TO DJI and replaced Through Warranty. If it is on DJI's replaced list. Then YES if you send it in for repair they will keep it
Good to know. Sounds like it's days are numbered then.
Hard lesson learned on my part trying to save a little money from buying it direct from DJI
 
My point was DJI suggested that you dispose of the drone because while it may be viable and flyable today, it likely will not tomorrow for whatever reason, I dunno.
See that's what's weird is they never really advised for me to dispose of it. (Throw away)
They simply mentioned return to the seller.
Which I find weird cuz if this thing was stolen wouldn't they want me to return it to DJI so that DJI can send it to the original owner?
 
dji will only log you out after so many days of non flying . I think if you fly at least once a wek or so you dont get logged out.
 
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DJI prioritizes user safety but respects privacy. Disabling a drone remotely could be dangerous if it's in flight, so they likely won't do it unless there's a proven safety risk. In your case, without confirmation of theft, they can't take such a drastic step.
DJI usually wouldn't keep a drone for being linked to a different account, especially without proof of theft. However, during repairs, they might identify internal inconsistencies or stolen components that could lead to confiscation.
 
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if this thing was stolen wouldn't they want me to return it to DJI so that DJI can send it to the original owner?
DJI most likely already replaced it as lost and they don't really care if they get it back.
In time ( they log you out or you log you out) The drone will be bricked and then its just table fodder.
 
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First of all, If you buy from any online platform like Facebook, you owe it to yourself to do a few extra things like taking a photo of their driver's license, tag number, or anything else that can help you track them down.

Where did you go to do the "test flight" you conducted? Their house, or a mutual place? When it comes to buying/selling DJI Drones (any Brand for that matter) it is VERY important to know how the activation/deactivation works.

You can contact Facebook Purchase Protection to see if there is anything that they can do (don't hold your breath here).

The good news is that you are currently able to fly your drone.
 
DJI prioritizes user safety but respects privacy. Disabling a drone remotely could be dangerous if it's in flight, so they likely won't do it unless there's a proven safety risk. In your case, without confirmation of theft, they can't take such a drastic step.
DJI usually wouldn't keep a drone for being linked to a different account, especially without proof of theft. However, during repairs, they might identify internal inconsistencies or stolen components that could lead to confiscation.
That would be the best outcome is if they don't lock the drone from flying because while I'd rather not have this RC controller and would prefer an RC Pro I can at least rest knowing I didn't waste my money on a paperweight.
I feel foolish trying to save a little money. In the future I'm gonna just buy direct from DJI.
 
DJI most likely already replaced it as lost and they don't really care if they get it back.
In time ( they log you out or you log you out) The drone will be bricked and then its just table fodder.
Gosh willing, this doesn't happen. Cause that would be money down the drain for me :(
 
First of all, If you buy from any online platform like Facebook, you owe it to yourself to do a few extra things like taking a photo of their driver's license, tag number, or anything else that can help you track them down.

Where did you go to do the "test flight" you conducted? Their house, or a mutual place? When it comes to buying/selling DJI Drones (any Brand for that matter) it is VERY important to know how the activation/deactivation works.

You can contact Facebook Purchase Protection to see if there is anything that they can do (don't hold your breath here).

The good news is that you are currently able to fly your drone.
yes very true.
We met at a local park.
After the quick flight he requested to clear his info off the device. I said I understand.
I figured perhaps he was deleting flight paths and records & taking his sd card out. After that I sent him cash App and that was that.
Unfortunately I didn't pay through facebook marketplace. And very true. I never got his license number.
Hard lesson learned.
 
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