August 13, 2021
HOULTON, Maine (WMTW) — Ten people are facing charges after Maine State Police said they seized more than 1,000 catalytic converters stolen from vehicles in northern Maine.
Police said they have been investigating the thefts of catalytic converters in northern Penobscot and southern Aroostook counties for several months.
Investigators said the ten people charged sold the catalytic converters for more than $190,000. The thefts date back to December 2019.
Officials said the estimated replacement cost of the catalytic converters is more than $2 million.
State police said the case remains under investigation and more charges are pending.
Police said the theft of catalytic converters has become a major problem in Maine. Catalytic converters are difficult to trace and match up to a particular vehicle.
Officials said it can cost about $2,000 to replace a catalytic converter, and they are typically sold as scrap for between $150 and $1,500 depending on the level of precious metals contained within the converter.
Police said Maine law requires that anyone selling a catalytic converter sign an affidavit swearing the converter is not stolen and must produce a photo ID.
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