$27-million car theft bust in Toronto leads to charges against 35 Mississauga, Brampton residents


Published April 26, 2023 at 2:47 pm

stolen cars mississauga Peel Regional Police conference
(File photo)

Nearly three dozen Brampton and Mississauga residents are among 119 people charged in the wake of a huge car theft bust by Toronto cops that turned up 556 stolen vehicles and parts worth about $27 million.

Those arrested, including 27 people from Brampton and eight from Mississauga, are facing a total of 314 charges, Toronto Police said at a news conference this afternoon (April 26).

The majority of remaining people charged are from Toronto. Many more are of no fixed address, police note.

The sweeping and ongoing investigation, dubbed Project Stallion, was launched last November and targeted those believed to be responsible for numerous vehicle and catalytic converter thefts in Toronto’s west end, police say.

According to police, suspects were charged and property recovered between last Nov. 7 and two weeks ago, April 11.

Investigators say it’s likely more vehicles and parts will be recovered, and possibly more arrests made, as the probe continues.

“Vehicle thefts in Toronto have more than doubled since 2019, making it a significant issue in our city and across the GTA,” said Toronto Police Chief Myron Demkiw at the news conference.

Car thefts have been on a dramatic rise in Mississauga, Brampton, Toronto and across the GTA the past number of years.

Also, catalytic converters have been a popular target among thieves in recent years in Mississauga, Brampton and across both Canada and the U.S., authorities say.

A catalytic converter is part of a vehicle’s exhaust system that reduces polluting emissions. It’s made of precious metals like palladium, platinum and rhodium, which make the car part especially valuable to thieves, and they’re relatively easy to remove from cars in about a minute.

Some of the precious metals are more valuable than gold, and their value has been increasing, reports from the U.S. indicate. Catalytic converters can cost more than $1,000 each on the black market.

Catalytic converters are popular items among thieves.

insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising