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Costly crime

BY THE NUMBERS | Catalytic converter thefts have become big business

Illustration by Krieg Barrie

Costly crime
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The increase in catalytic converter thefts in the United States between 2018 and 2020 according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau. The valuable precious metals inside catalytic converters have made the auto part a hot target for thieves.


The average scrap value of a catalytic converter in early September according to New Jersey–based junk dealer Rockaway Recycling.


The rough estimate offered by RepairPal for the cost of replacing a catalytic converter, though prices vary by model.


The number of states that enacted new legislation in 2021 aimed at quelling the surge of catalytic converter thefts.

30 seconds

The time needed for a thief to cut away a catalytic converter with a reciprocating saw, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau’s David Glawe.


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