A group of Chicago residents traveled to Pittsburgh and stole a catalytic converter worth over $200,000 from a car. According to Pennsylvania officialsTwo of the accused men were the subject of a CWB Chicago report after they were found eight years ago in a stolen North Side van laden with 24 catalytic converters.
Christian Buy, 31, Harold Wade, 29, and Antonio Johnson, 42, are being held without bail on charges of corrupt organization, conspiracy, theft and related crimes, Greens said. Berg Tribune Review report this week.
Investigators said the men traveled to Pennsylvania in December and stole a catalytic converter while driving a rented Porsche Panamera and SUV.
But rather than target cars parked on residential streets, the group decided to take the simpler route of simply going to a car dealership and removing the catalytic converter from a car offered for sale, he said. A Pennsylvania newspaper reported.
A dealer chain had 35 catalytic converters stolen from a Mitsubishi Outlander. Total damages: $124,000. Another had a catalytic converter worth $20,000 stolen from a tow truck.
Investigators learned that the Porsche was near the scene of the theft and linked the vehicle to a rented SUV. Police determined that two Chicago women leased the car, he reported to the Tribune-Review.
Authorities sifted through data from cell phone towers near the theft site for call activity from Chicago-based numbers and identified Buie, Wade, and Johnson as the prime suspects.
On Friday, Pennsylvania investigators placed a GPS tracker in the car the three were believed to be using to commit further thefts of catalytic converters in Pittsburgh. The tracker pinged near several locations where catalytic converter thefts were reported over the weekend, the paper said.
Police arrested three men during a traffic stop on Saturday and allegedly found 17 catalytic converters in the SUV.
In January 2015, Bouillet and Wade were among five men in a minivan in Chicago’s North Center neighborhood containing 24 stolen catalytic converters.
Unlike Pennsylvania prosecutors, Chicago prosecutors only charged the man with a misdemeanor. They were all on probation.
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