Security camera spots crooks stealing a catalytic converter in 60 seconds, highlighting common crime

The car’s still there, but a very important part of it was gone in less than a minute.

(SWNS)

Security camera footage that captured two thieves stealing the catalytic converter from a car parked on a Nottingham, England, street shows just how easy it is to pull off the lucrative crime. The crooks simply pulled up to the white compact and lifted it with a hydraulic jack while one slipped underneath and used a power drill with a screwdriver bit to remove the emissions system component, which can contain valuable metals like platinum, palladium, and rhodium.

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“As our CCTV clip shows, it can take offenders only a matter of seconds to remove a catalytic converter which is why we’re re-appealing to members of the public to be vigilant and report any suspicious activity to us,” Nottinghamshire Police said.

(iStock)

Although this incident took place in the U.K., it’s also a common occurrence in the U.S. According to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, there were nearly 4,000 claims filed for catalytic converter thefts in 2015 alone with each worth from $20 and $240 to the thief. Trucks and SUVs are common targets because thieves can often fit under them without even needing to use a jack.

Automobile catalytic converter emission control devices sit in a trolley at BM Catalysts in Mansfield, U.K., on Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015. Platinum extended its slump to the lowest in more than six years amid concerns demand from automakers will slow as investigations into the Volkswagen AG scandal deepen. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Automobile catalytic converter emission control devices sit in a trolley at BM Catalysts in Mansfield, U.K., on Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015. Platinum extended its slump to the lowest in more than six years amid concerns demand from automakers will slow as investigations into the Volkswagen AG scandal deepen. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images (Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Given the ease of catalytic converter removal, experts suggest parking a vehicle in a secure or well-lighted location as a preventative measure, and the NICB recommends conspicuously etching the car’s vehicle identification number onto the catalytic converter to make it easier to trace as a deterrent. Beyond that, there are aftermarket products available to secure a catalytic converter, some equipped with alarms. While some of them can cost as much as a replacement part, the NICB notes that the hasty removal process during a theft often causes additional damage to a vehicle.

The Nottingham thieves remain at large.

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