Police Forces Target Catalytic Converter Thieves

Police forces throughout the country recently participated in a nationwide crackdown on catalytic converter thieves…

Catalytic Converter Theft

Catalytic converters are, essentially, emissions control devices that convert toxic pollutants into less harmful emissions. Unfortunately, most of them are made of precious metals – including platinum, rhodium and palladium. This has made them particularly attractive to car thieves. So much so that a whopping 38,000 were stolen in 2021 alone.

So prized are catalytic converters that some thieves have actually been filmed targeting vehicles in London in the broad daylight; with the whole process taking a few minutes at most. Now, however, police are clamping down…

Police Action 

Police forces throughout the UK recently participated in a seven-day operation aimed at targeting metal crime and money laundering. A large part of it was actually targeted at gangs involved with stealing catalytic converters. Some 600 premises were visited between Thursday 10th and Wednesday 16th. Thirty arrests were made in total.

In addition to the arrests, a number of scrap metal companies were issued with closure notices. In order to help prevent future thefts, 1,400 catalytic converters were also forensically marked; which makes it much harder to sell them if they’re stolen.

BTP Assistant Chief Constable Charlie Doyle commented on the operation. He said, “the police response to metal theft has significantly increased over the past 18 months and we’re making substantial progress in disrupting organised crime groups operating in this area of crime”. He added, “by taking a multi-agency approach, we’re maximising our ability to identify those involved, making it harder for them to sell stolen metal and gain from their criminal activities”.

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