Civil officers of the Cologne police found and arrested four suspected catalyst thieves between the ages of 22 and 35 in a well-frequented parking lot on Fühlinger See early on Thursday evening. At around 6:50 p.m., bathers noticed the men standing next to a Mercedes that had already been jacked up, heard a compressor and immediately alerted the police.
The police confiscated a Skoda and a Renault with which the arrested apparently got to the crime scene. In and under the cars, the emergency services found hydraulic shears, a compressor, a jack and other tools. The Cologne Criminal Police Office is now investigating suspicion of serious commercial theft of motor vehicles.
The Cologne police are currently noticing a sharp increase in the theft of catalytic converters and registered 125 acts in 2020 in which the thieves are concerned with the precious metals used. Since the beginning of 2021, catalyst thieves have struck more than 100 times, mostly at night. As a rule, the perpetrators jack up the cars to dismantle them. The police asked witnesses who observe such a procedure not to speak to the suspects personally, but urgently to dial 110. (anm)