POLICE officers are running a catalytic converter theft awareness campaign in Kingswood today to help people combat the surge in this particular crime.

The Gloucestershire Police campaign, codenamed Operation Persian, follows a wave of catalytic converter thefts right across the county.

Numerous catalytic converter thefts have taken place recently, including Charlton Kings, Stroud, Wotton-under-Edge, Twyning and elsewhere.

Converters are stolen both from vehicles on the street and in garages, typically by cutting them from the exhaust using a disc cutter.

The “cat roadshow” will be at three locations and will provide advice on guarding against theft and feature catalytic converter marking kits to deter thieves and aid recovery.

The kits can mark Mercedes, Peugeot, Citroen, Toyota, Ford and Mitsubishi models.

The team is set to be at Kingswood Village Hall today from 10.30am to 1.30pm.

PC Matt Rollason said catalytic converters were an extremely valuable car part.

“Having them stolen causes enormous inconvenience, including loss of our vital means of transport, high cost of repairs and possibly higher insurance, not to mention increased police time investigating the thefts,” he said.

“The roadshow is a chance to learn how to guard against this theft and help us track down cases. I urge people to come and meet us, get your converters marked and help us fight crime.”