RENO, Nev. (KRNV & MyNews4.com) -- Yesterday, members of the Crime Suppression Team conducted a plain-clothes surveillance operation targeting suspects in catalytic converter thefts from Dodge and Toyota trucks and sport utility vehicles in the area of Vassar and Market Streets and arrested four people.
During the operation, a group of four individuals were seen checking vehicles in business parking lots. While in the parking lot of one of the businesses, Reno Police say one of the individuals removed a catalytic converter from a vehicle while the others acted as look-outs. They all returned to a vehicle and drove out of the parking lot. A traffic stop was conducted and the catalytic converter was located in the trunk of the vehicle, according to Reno Police.
All four individuals involved were arrested without incident, and the catalytic converter was returned to the owner. This group is from Stockton, California and is responsible for similar type crimes in that area as well.
Those arrested were 24-year-old Rhota Vin (charged with Grand Larceny, Conspiracy, Possession of Burglary Tools, and Identity Theft), 23-year-old Thaveesak Kham (charged with charged with Grand Larceny, Conspiracy, Possession of Burglary Tools, and Identity Theft), 28-year-old Hien Thang Dao (charged with charged with Grand Larceny, Conspiracy, Possession of Burglary Tools, Identity Theft and Possession of Methamphetamine) and 20-year-old Mariya Loera (charged with Grand Larceny, Conspiracy, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia).
The Reno Police Department would like to remind citizens to park in well-lit areas if possible and to contact Police if they see anyone acting suspicious near or under a vehicle. Citizens may be able to protect their vehicles from catalytic converter theft by installing aftermarket devices designed to prevent the theft or to make it more difficult for the catalytic converter to be removed.
Loera, Mariya DOB: 04/29/93 Charges: Grand Larceny, Conspiracy, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.