Pair questioned amid probe into catalytic converter thefts

Environment Agency officers investigate catalytic converter thefts

A man and a woman were questioned as part of a probe by the Environment Agency into catalytic converter thefts. Inset: catalytic converters found in a shipping container and the container being seized. - Credit: Environment Agency

A man and a woman are the latest to be questioned as part of an ongoing investigation into the rise of catalytic converter thefts. 

The pair, in their twenties, were arrested as part of a probe by the Environment Agency (EA) into the theft of catalytic converters. 

The man and woman were held at an address in Long Sutton as police assisted the EA in recovering a large amount of cash and a machine from the property on September 7. 

Sgt Gareth Phillips, of Lincolnshire Police, said: “This was a successful joint operation between ourselves and a number of our partner agencies, which has resulted in the seizure of a number of suspected stolen items as well as a large quantity of cash.” 

Catalytic converters found in a shipping container in Lincolnshire

A man and a woman were questioned as part of a probe by the Environment Agency into catalytic converter thefts. Pictured are catalytic converters found in a shipping container. - Credit: Environment Agency

A number of catalytic converters were also removed from a van, a shed and a storage unit by police and EA officers, while the van was also seized. 

The pair have been released pending further enquiries. 

A van holding stolen catalytic converters was seized in Lincolnshire

A number of catalytic converters were also removed from a van, which was seized. - Credit: Environment Agency

Yvonne Daly, operations manager for the EA in Lincolnshire, said: “The storage of hazardous waste materials can harm the environment, blight communities and undermine the legitimate businesses that do follow the rules.  

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“Our role is to protect the environment for people and wildlife, so we won’t hesitate to take action against those who put it at risk.” 

Ms Daly added: “To businesses flouting the rules our message is clear: you won’t get away with it.” 

Anyone with information is urged to contact police on 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. 

A shipping container seized by the Environment Agency

A shipping container which held stolen catalytic converters was also seized. - Credit: Environment Agency

The number of catalytic converter thefts has become a major issue in Cambridgeshire. 

Between January and August this year, there have been 446 such thefts across the county

Sgt James Sutherland, of Cambridgeshire police, warned many converters contain “precious amounts of metals” which can become a target for thieves. 

“You are basically talking about the value of a reasonably priced engagement ring being stuck to the underneath of your car,” he said. 

Catalytic converters are found in the exhaust system of every car and reduce the output of toxic gases and pollutants.    

Stealing them has become popular because they aren’t easily identifiable and can be sold on for the precious metals found inside them which can fetch between £50 and £200 a time. 

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