A year-long investigation by Pennsylvania authorities into a catalytic theft network culminates with the arrest of ten adults and a minor.
11 People were Arrested and Charged with Theft for Stealing Catalytic Converter
Based on the news reported by Fox News, authorities in Pennsylvania imprisoned 11 people, including one minor, who were allegedly involved in a catalytic converter ring that robbed more than $8 million in the Delaware Valley.
According to the Bucks County District Attorney’s Office, an almost year-long investigation brought about in the charging of Philadelphia-based TDI Towing, ten adults, and a juvenile with infractions such as corrupt organizations, criminal conspiracy, dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities, and other related counts.
Catalytic converter thefts have increased across the country, including Bucks County, in recent years, owing mostly to three precious metals found inside – rhodium, platinum, and palladium. Because of supply chain concerns, the value of the three metals surged during the outbreak of the epidemic, and those metals can be taken away and sold from catalytic converters. The units can also be removed from automobiles in about a minute, making them an appealing target for thieves.
TDI Towing as Buyer of Catalytic Converters
Thousands of catalytic converters were removed from automobiles in Bucks County between 2020 and 2023, according to the DA’s office, resulting in pricey repairs. According to investigators, TDI Towing was the primary buyer of stolen catalytic converters in Buck and Montgomery counties. The towing company was allegedly accused of paying the criminals at least $10,00 per night who sells catalytic converters. According to the DA’s office, TDI Towing advertised daytime hours but people would show up all night to sell catalytic converters.
Thousands of hours spent observing the tow yard, controlled purchases, and other modern procedures assisted cops in identifying thieves and customers. Investigators claim that for nearly three years, TDI Towing purchased an average of 175 catalytic converters per week, or 27,300 in total, for $8.2 million, with employees paying an average of $300 for each unit.
Michael Williams, 52, of Philadelphia, ran TDI Towing, and his company included some family members, including his sister-in-law Lisa Davalos, 47.
READ ALSO: Oil Theft in Rural Areas and How to Prevent