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      Thieves targeting catalytic converters

      Your car may be the target of thieves.

      Harlingen Police say thefts of catalytic converters are on the rise.

      A lot of cars have these parts that are in high demand for crooks.

      It is a device that controls exhaust emissions, making them less toxic to the environment.

      They have been targeted by thieves for years because of the metals they are made of.

      They are easy to be sawed off a vehicle, especially a pickup that is high off the ground.

      "We arrived Monday morning to notice that our vehicles, when they started they were making a bad noise," said Francisco Martinez, the general manager at Safeguard Pest Control.

      He said on the night of Sunday June 10th, a group of guys cut a hole in the fence surrounding the company parking lot in the 8000 block of Westway Drive in Harlingen and cut the catalytic converters off five of their Ford Rangers.

      "It just ruined our day, our production," said Francisco.

      Customers were impacted with appointments pushed back with a shortage of working vehicles.

      Employees trying to make an honest living could not do their jobs.

      The company was forced to pay $1,250 to replace the missing parts.

      "It bothers you. It really bothers you to know that people, to make a quick buck they'll go out and try to take something from somebody else," said Martinez.

      Harlingen Police have surveillance video that shows 5 guys rolling up in a white Ford F-150 who committed the crime.

      Martinez hopes they'll be caught and pay the price for violating his business.

      Police say several businesses have also been hit.

      If you have any information on this case, call Harlingen Crime Stoppers at 425-TIPS.