Catalyst theft criminals make 545 million, get caught
Before you confuse this with a sales pitch at a career fair, these guys were busted by the police. While you can get rich with catalytic converter theft, it’s short-lived. The U.S. Department of Justice has arrested a group of 21 suspects for allegedly stealing large quantities of catalytic converters.
Police have seized $545 million worth of cars, goods and real estate in the US. The items were allegedly bought with money the suspects made from stealing and selling catalytic converters. According to the Department of Justice, the catalytic converter stolen in the United States is worth about $1,000.
Catalyst thieves earn $1,000 per unit
Catalyst theft is a big problem in America. About 1,600 catalytic converters were removed from under cars in the state of California last year. In Tulsa, Oklahoma alone, 2,000 units are missing. The temptation for criminals is understandable: you’ve made $1,000 in a minute. Especially in tall cars like pick-ups, you don’t even need to use a jack.
Suspects come into the picture after following the money trail in the crime branch of the tax authorities (by which we mean the ones who spot fraudsters, not those who collect outrageous excise duties). So they are not necessarily caught in the act. Police are calling on anyone to share any additional information that may be relevant to the case. That doesn’t really apply to us here.
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