Assemblymember O’Donnell Takes Action Against Soaring Catalytic Converter Thefts

For immediate release:

(SACRAMENTO) Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell (D – Long Beach) has introduced AB 2407 to address the dramatic rise in catalytic converter thefts. According to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, catalytic converter thefts increased by 400% countywide in 2020.

AB 2407 would tighten requirements on the sale of catalytic converters to junk dealers and recyclers to crack down on criminal activity. Specifically, AB 2407 would require any person or business that buys a used catalytic converter to:

Share the information they are required to collect about the seller with local law enforcement.

  • Obtain a thumbprint from each seller and keep it on file for two years.
  • Sign up to receive notifications about catalytic converter theft in their area.

The bill would also add catalytic converters to the list of stolen metals currently tracked on a theft alert website maintained by the metal recycling industry. Law enforcement and individuals can report thefts and the information will alert metal recyclers within a 100 mile radius of the theft.

“These outrageous crimes can be committed in as little as two minutes and may net the thieves a few hundred dollars,” said O’Donnell. “For vehicle owners, the repairs cost thousands of dollars, plus the costs of losing the use of your car for days or weeks. These thefts are out of control and we must increase accountability. By making it harder for the criminal to turn a quick buck, we can reduce the incentive to commit these crimes in the first place.”

Catalytic converters are emission control devices on vehicles that reduce pollution. They contain small amounts of highly valuable metals, including platinum, rhodium, palladium and iridium. This makes them attractive targets for thieves.

AB 2407 is expected to receive a hearing in a policy committee in the coming weeks.

###

Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell (D-Long Beach) chairs the Assembly Education Committee and the Assembly Select Committees on Ports and Goods Movement. He represents District 70 which includes the communities of Long Beach, Signal Hill, San Pedro and Catalina Island.