Two Pearl River-area men have been arrested after detectives with the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Property Crimes Division uncovered they have been stealing catalytic converters off of vehicles and selling them at a scrap yard in Mississippi. Catalytic converters were reported stolen off vehicles at a parish parking lot in Pearl River, at a retirement home in Slidell, at a car dealership in Covington, at storage facilities in Mandeville and Pearl River and off state-owned equipment at a construction site in Covington.
While investigating these crimes, detectives learned that since the beginning of this year, Garic Aleman and Averice Craddock have sold more than 325 catalytic converters at a scrap yard in Gulfport, Miss. Those catalytic converters had a total scrap value of just under $49,000, but detectives pointed out the street value of them is higher.
Both men have been charged with crimes, however, this is an ongoing investigation, and detectives believe there may be additional thefts that have not yet been reported. Anyone with information about these crimes or believe they may be a victim, is asked to contact the St. Tammany Parish Sheriff’s Office at (985)898-2338.