A coalition of agencies led by the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station Crime Impact Team served multiple search warrants on Wednesday in the city of Los Angeles, resulting in 250 catalytic converters being recovered and 19 individuals being arrested.
In a press release distributed on Wednesday, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said in addition to the arrests made and $750,000 worth of converters recovered, the warrants served at four different locations also recovered one “ghost” handgun and approximately $100,000.
“After countless hours of follow-up investigation, multiple locations within the city were believed to be related to thefts occurring in the Santa Clarita Valley, as well as several Los Angeles County areas,” the release read.
Over the last few years, and in the press release, officials have emphasized the importance of securing your converters and possessions to ward off the potential for theft. Converters contain precious metals and can be “scrapped” for quick profit.
The arrests and recovery of the converters on Wednesday remain a part of an ongoing investigation.
The sheriff station recommends, in order to avoid being a victim of theft, to perform the following steps when securing your converters and cars:
- Park in well-lit areas with surveillance cameras.
- Weld the bolts on your catalytic converter shut.
- Engrave or etch the license plate number onto your catalytic converter.
- Always report suspicious activity – If you see something, say something.
If you have any information regarding the theft of catalytic converters, you can contact the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station at 661-255-1121. Anonymous tips can also be submitted through “LA Crime Stoppers” at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or on www.LACrimeStoppers.org.