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Following a recent spike in catalytic converter thefts, we are urging everyone to be vigilant around vehicle security.
An emerging series of these thefts has been noted in North Wales, along with the neighbouring force areas of Cheshire and West Mercia.
Since January of this year, 15 incidents have been logged across the districts of Flintshire, Wrexham and Denbighshire.
Catalytic converters are devices fitted to vehicle exhausts to reduce the amount of dangerous gases emitted.
They are often targeted by thieves as they contain valuable metals and can be removed in less than a minute.
T/Chief Inspector Gavin Gilmore said: "We are currently seeing an increase in the theft of catalytic converters across our force area.
"Precious metals such as rhodium, platinum and palladium are used in catalytic converters and we know these are sought after by thieves.
"The price of these metals has risen sharply in recent years and has led to an increase in theft offences.
“Several converter thefts have involved Japanese vehicles, particularly the Honda Jazz model of car.
“While we would ask drivers of this vehicle model to take extra care, we are warning all vehicle owners to be aware of the threat posed by opportunistic thieves.
“The most recent report we have dealt with is believed to have occurred overnight on Sunday, 24 April at an address on Whalley’s Way, Acrefair.
“We are appealing for witnesses to that incident and for anyone with CCTV/dashcam footage to make a report via 101, quoting incident number B058050.
“I would also urge anyone who witnesses suspicious behaviour around parked vehicles to act quickly and report it to us.”
Officers investigating these incidents believe that a recent spate of thefts from inside parked vehicles may be linked to the same offenders.
Although catalytic converter thefts are increasing nationwide, there are steps that you can take to protect your vehicle.
To keep your catalytic converter safe, you can ask your car dealer for advice on locks or guards that are approved by the vehicle manufacturer and tested to Sold Secure Gold.
Alternatively, try to make sure your vehicle is parked in a garage overnight, or if you have a commercial vehicle, park it in a secure compound.
If this isn’t possible, park in an area that’s well-lit and overlooked and try to park so that the converter can’t be easily reached by potential thieves.
Vehicles that sit high above the road are particularly vulnerable.
You should also register your converter and mark it with a forensic marker, which will make it harder for thieves to dispose of it.
If you have been a victim of this type of theft you can report incidents via our online service: Report | North Wales Police or by calling 101.
For further advice on keeping your vehicle secure visit: Catalytic converter theft | North Wales Police
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