B.C. has introduced a new rule to curb the sale of stolen catalytic converters, requiring metal dealers to report the sale of the device to police, including information on the seller.

Public Safety Minister and Solicitor General Mike Farnworth announced the amendment to the Metal Dealers and Recyclers Regulation Monday, removing the ability for thieves to sell catalytic converters anonymously.

“We are changing the rules to better fight thieves who steal catalytic converters,” said Mike Farnworth, Minister of Public Safety and Solicitor General.

“These thefts create costs and consequences to the livelihoods of British Columbians, and this change reduces the incentive to steal them in the first place.”

The province says the amendment was proposed by stakeholder groups, including the BC Association of Police Boards, to thwart the sale and distribution of stolen items.

“The theft of catalytic converters is a serious problem, and we are happy to have consulted with the Province to help curb this illegal activity,” said Charla Huber, president, BC Association of Police Boards. ”

“We are pleased that the Metal Dealers and Recyclers Regulation has been amended to include catalytic converters where they are detached from an exhaust system. We believe this provides police with an important tool to close the channel on those who steal and resell these items.”

Catalytic converters contain precious metals, including platinum, palladium and cadmium, and seem popular among thieves because they can get up to $1,000 per device.

According to ICBC, catalytic converter thefts in B.C. have climbed from 89 in 2017 to 1,953 last year.

Claim costs have also risen from $356,950 in 2017 to $4.06 million in 2021 for catalytic converters.


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