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West Side Recycling Plant Raided As Police Investigate Stolen Catalytic Converters

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Police from several towns raided a recycling plant on the West Side Wednesday. What they found were hundreds of expensive catalytic converters believed to be stolen from cars and trucks.

CBS 2's Suzanne Le Mignot reports police were still on the scene at Gomez Recycling Inc. on the 4600 block of W. Chicago Avenue Wednesday afternoon. Witness Nia Intud said the officers, have been here since around 10 a.m.

"There was about 100 or 200, like they were under cover," said Intud. "Nobody was in uniform. Everybody was wearing vests. There was even some guys in army suits"

Chicago police say they and Schaumburg police, along with the Cook County State's Attorney's Office, issued arrest warrants for a number of people responsible for purchasing hundreds of catalytic converters. Police say the items are suspected to be stolen.

Surveillance video captured a handcuffed person led to this waiting police van, with blue lights flashing. Moments later, a second handcuffed person was put into the same vehicle.

37th Ward Alderman Emma Mitts has backed an ordinance to make sure recycling companies take proper documentation from those turning in recycling material.

"I think it's a great thing today!" she said. "It's a great success for the community that we can get rid of a business that's doing this and accepting" stolen goods. That's hundreds of people that have been in trouble and have put some hardship on."

It's a hardship because replacing a stolen catalytic converter, which cost hundreds of dollars.

Police say they'll have more updates on this case, as the investigation continues.

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