More than 200 charges over catalytic converter thefts

Friday 23 June 2023 5:14am – 

Transit Divisional Response Unit detectives have charged a man with more than 200 offences following a major investigation into the theft of catalytic converters from vehicles across Melbourne.

The 40-year-old, from South Australia, was arrested in an allegedly stolen MG at a carpark in Springvale on Tuesday.

Police will allege he stole more than 70 catalytic converters, which form part of a vehicle’s exhaust and are valuable because of the metal they’re made from.

The stolen parts have an estimated $270,000 value.

The man has been charged with 212 offences including theft of a motor vehicle, theft from a motor vehicle, theft and drug offences.

The investigation began in April following reports one of the car parts was stolen from a parked vehicle in Noble Park.

Police linked the incident to a number of thefts across 10 suburbs including Dandenong, Springvale, Burwood, Highett, Chadstone and Brunswick.

The thefts occurred between April and June this year.

Transit DRU is continuing its investigations with more charges expected.

The man is facing separate charges after a van allegedly rammed an unmarked police car at Dandenong North on 16 June.

A police officer discharged his firearm at the van.

Nobody was injured.

The man has been charged with recklessly exposing a police officer to risk by driving and conduct endangering serious injury over the incident.

Professional Standards Command is overseeing Victoria Police’s investigation as is standard procedure.

The man appeared before Melbourne Magistrates’ Court over all the charges on Wednesday.

He was remanded to face the court again on 20 September 2023.