Essex: ASBO pair banned from touching cars

A pair of Essex men have been banned from even touching an unattended car following an investigation into the theft of 205 catalytic converters.

Richard Parker and Mark Mower were given anti-social behaviour orders (ASBOs), one covering the whole of England and the other most of East Anglia, in connection with the thefts.

Under the conditions of the three-year ASBOs the men have been ordered not to touch or enter any unattended vehicle, enter any business premises or garage forecourt outside opening hours or be in possession of any tools that might be used for removing the converters.

The ASBO issued to Mower, 20, of Willows Green, Chelmsford, covers Essex, Suffolk, Norfolk, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire, while the order against Parker, 24, from Long Green, Cressing, covers the whole of England.

Evidence presented by Essex Police to Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court yesterday, stated that there were “205 outstanding catalytic converter thefts that match Parker and Mower’s MO that were committed in Central division whilst either Parker or Mower were not in police custody between February 2010 and 29 November 2010.”

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The court was told that Mower and Parker had both been convicted of stealing four catalytic converters from vehicles at Severalls industrial estate, Colchester, in September 2010. At Chelmsford Crown Court on December 2, 2010 Parker was given an eight–month jail sentence and Mower was given six months, suspended for two years.

Chief Insp Nick Lee, Braintree district commander, said: “There were two huge spikes in catalytic converter theft in Braintree district and the north of the county last year.

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“Stealing a catalytic converter is a very disruptive crime, as it prevents people going to work and doing simple, everyday, things, such as visiting family and friends. It is also very expensive, and often time consuming, to get a catalytic converter replaced.

“Essex Police will use all means at our disposal to eradicate catalytic converter theft, and we hope that the ASBO will provide additional protection and reassurance to car owners across our region.

“I would like to thank the officers and staff who worked tirelessly on this matter, and whose hard work has led to the two ASBOs.”

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