A boy with a history was arrested in Pescara. Shortly before, he had relieved two Lancia Ypsilons of the precious terminals. A growing phenomenon both in Italy and in Europe, this is because three precious metals are present in the catalysts

    Lorenzo Pastuglia

    June 23

    He was slipping away on his bicycle, having stolen two catalytic converters from as many local Lancia Ys. The rascal, a boy with precedents, had recently carried out his coup between the Puccini and Petrarca streets in Pescara, before being stopped by the carabinieri of the mobile radio operating unit of the Abruzzo capital. As it is written on the de The center, both catalysts of the mufflers were inside an envelope, while the thief was transporting them by bicycle through the streets of the Abruzzo city. All before the intervention of the police.

    Theft, a European problem

    In addition to the mufflers, the young man also had with him the picks used to disassemble the two devices. Once the material (with an estimated value of around 500 euros) was recovered by the police, it was then returned to the respective owners of the two Lancias. Those of Pescara are just two of the latest examples of a long series, for a phenomenon that is happening not only in Italy, but in various European countries. So much so that last weekend in our country thefts of catalytic converters were also reported in Corso Mazzini in Savona (Liguria) and in the industrial area of ​​Salerno, in Campania. In May in Rome, three boys, one of whom a minor, were also stopped by the carabinieri, with six tailpipes of the same number of Smart and still in the capital two other men were found with five mufflers stolen from Smart and stowed in a van.

    Why these thefts?

    The muffler is a device that is very tempting to thieves. This is because in anti-pollution devices there are three rare metals, which can allow great profits: palladium, platinum and rhodium. The latter is 10 times more expensive than gold and, according to the current price, is worth around 425 euros per gram (just this quantity is present, on average, in each catalyst). The other two, on the other hand, have lower values, similar to those of gold (56 euros per gram): palladium is around 58 euros, platinum 30. The estimated income for each stolen catalyst ranges from 150 to 400 euros. , depending on the type. To carry out their shots, the thieves act at night just before dawn to make sure the cars are cold. A catalytic converter, in fact, to be effective must work at temperatures around 800 degrees. Therefore, in order to be able to collect these metals, the vehicles must have been parked for a long time.