Catalytic converter theft tackled with week of action
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Officers from Northamptonshire Police have carried out a range of activities to target those involved in stealing catalytic converters from vehicles.
As part of a national week of action coordinated by British Transport Police, the Force carried out visits to vulnerable locations, conducted patrols in areas where this type of offending is known to happen, including using automatic number-plate recognition (ANPR) technology, and undertook proactive targeting of suspect vehicles and offenders.
Results included two men arrested on suspicion of theft of catalytic converters, the identification of more hotspot areas to enable further targeted patrols, and the sharing of crime prevention information with over 200 owners of more vulnerable Honda and Toyota vehicles.
Detective Chief Inspector Steve Watkins, of the Force Intelligence Bureau, which led the week of action, said: “Catalytic converters are attractive to thieves as they contain high-value rare earth metals, and those involved are often part of organised crime groups.
“Northamptonshire Police is determined to tackle metal theft in all its forms, which include catalytic converter theft, stealing power cables and signals from railway lines and the taking of lead from the roofs of places of worship.
“Our use of ANPR during the week was really crucial in providing information that allowed us to target an offender, with our ANPR Intelligence unit working with our Road Crime Team, Operations and Response teams to carry out an arrest.
“It’s this kind of work that demonstrates how the Force works as a single team to use our specialist assets to aggressively target those who would commit crime in our county.
“Thanks to the work carried out during the week, the Force can now be even more proactive in tackling catalytic converter theft, which causes motorists a great deal of inconvenience, stress and unnecessary expense.
The week of action also led to a number of unrelated offences being detected, including a vehicle known as being used in crime being seized, two drink-drive arrests and three speeding offences.