Oregon cops make arrests in thefts of 44,000 catalytic converters

Police in a suburb of Portland, Oregon, said Thursday they arrested a crime leader responsible for trafficking more than 44,000 catalytic converters stolen from West Coast vehicles since 2021.
Beaverton Police say they busted a local organized crime ring and arrested two suspected ringleaders and 12 suspected associates. According to Oregon Live, authorities were alerted to the operations when one of the suspects was caught transporting 100 stolen catalytic converters during a traffic stop in late 2021.
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The discovery led to a months-long investigation, culminating in a series of raids and seizures in July, during which authorities raided eight locations and found 3,000 stolen catalytic converters (along with a stack of cash, an unspecified but "high-end" car and jewelry, probably stolen).
The metals in catalytic converters can sell for thousands of dollars an ounce. The street value of the stolen and trafficked parts was estimated at over $22 million.
The suspects are charged with stealing catalytic converters from vehicles along the west coast and beyond, Beaverton police spokesman Matt Henderson told the Associated Press. The crime ring was centered in Portland but spanned multiple counties in Oregon, as well as Washington state, Nevada, California, Texas and New York, he said.
The crime ring shipped boxes of converters to the East Coast and internationally, Henderson said. Dozens if not hundreds of people may have been involved in the operation, he added, but declined to give further details as investigations are ongoing.

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