As is the case with any desirable piece of technology, the iPad has been the unfortunate subject of more than a few scams in its time, and a new one has come to light in Canada recently.

According to reports, some unlucky buyers have picked up new iPad 2 units from some Best Buy, Future Shop, Walmart and London Drugs stores only to find that the boxes do not actually contain iPads as expected, but rather a giant grey slab of modelling clay.

It’s not even a nice color…

It would appear that the boxes sold were sealed and appeared upon a cursory inspection to be all A-OK, though upon opening the full horror was revealed.

Obviously someone has been intercepting iPads, opening them and then taking out the tablets only to replace them with something suitably weighty in order to cover their tracks. That’s where the clay comes in.

Interestingly the crooks are then managing to re-seal the boxes so that nobody realizes what has happened. The stores affected have now launched fraud investigations, with between thirty and forty iPads apparently stolen.

If you’re going to buy an iPad in Canada this week, it might be an idea to open the box in-store, just to save any potential hassle!

[The Verge]