The battle against Catalytic Converter Thefts continues

Posted On Thursday June 17, 2021

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Thursday, June 17, 2021   2:30pm 

(Ottawa) — Only a few weeks ago, the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) issued a release highlighting the ongoing problem in the City with catalytic converter thefts. Earlier today, OPS also released photos of several suspects to identify involved in these thefts; we are now bringing attention to the consequences for would-be thieves and buyers.   

What we know: 

  • As of June 8th, 2021, there has been a 324% increase in Catalytic Converter thefts over the same period last year (January 1st to June 8th).
  • Thieves appear to be targeting vehicles in parking lots, parking garages, and lane ways. 

What this means for vehicle owners: 

  • Possibly pay out of pocket to have damages repaired.
  • Making an insurance claim also means insurance premiums can go up. 

Notice to potential thieves and buyers: 

  • Stealing a catalytic converter can result in Criminal charges including Theft under $5000, Mischief under $5000, Possession of stolen property under $5000
  • Purchasing a stolen catalytic converter can result in Criminal charges for the buyer too.
    - Purchasing one: Possession of property obtained by crime under $5000

- Purchasing two: Possession of property obtained by crime over $5000

- Possible charges of Trafficking in property obtained by crime over $5000, Breaking and Entering, and Laundering proceeds of crime. 

You can protect your vehicle against catalytic converter thefts:  

  • Make your vehicle less vulnerable to thefts by parking it in a locked garage.
  • Lock your vehicle and ensure that the security system is active, if equipped.
  • Exterior lighting and video surveillance around the driveway can also serve as a deterrent.
  • Parking near a busy pedestrian area or near any known surveillance cameras. 
  • Finally, good old-fashioned neighbourhood watch. If you see something suspicious, do not engage the suspected thieves, call 911, and be vigilant! 

The Ottawa Police Service is diligently investigating all reports of Catalytic Converter thefts with the intent of identifying and charging the individuals responsible for stealing these items as well as those purchasing them. These are serious criminal charges with serious penalties and possibly jail time. 

Anyone with information that could identify offenders, those stealing or purchasing them for resale, are encouraged to report it to police by contacting the Police Reporting Unit at 613-236-1222 ext. 7300 or online.

 Anonymous tips can be submitted by calling Crime Stoppers toll-free at 1-800-222-8477 or at crimestoppers.ca 

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CONTACT:

Media Relations Section

Tel: 613-236-1222, ext. 5366