HARRIS COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- A total of 32 stolen catalytic converters were recovered in northwest Harris County and four suspects were arrested, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez says.
According to a Facebook post published by Gonzalez on Saturday, four people tried to get away from deputies during a traffic stop on Friday. When they were caught, he said deputies found 32 "fresh stolen" catalytic converters.
"Catalytic converter theft is a thing and it seems the problem is only getting worse," wrote Gonzalez. "Texas is a hot spot state."
Authorities have told Eyewitness News they've seen a rise in calls about catalytic converter thefts.
Earlier this month, a catalytic converter theft led to a police chase and crash on Houston's northeast side after investigators say three men stole six catalytic converters off of cars along Humble-Westfield Road.
The suspects allegedly used hacksaws to remove the car parts.
READ MORE: 3 suspects lead officers on chase after stealing 6 catalytic converters, HPD says
Catalytic converters are valuable and can be sold for $150 to $200 due to the copper inside and other valuable metals. It costs around $2,000 to replace a catalytic converter, which is required to control exhaust emissions from your vehicle.
They don't have serial numbers or markings on them, so they're hard to trace, which is one of the reasons why thieves steal them.
32 stolen catalytic converters recovered during traffic stop in NW Harris County, sheriff says