More than 500 Catalytic Converters Seized in Benton County
(Kennewick, WA) -- Several law enforcement agencies from around Washington State descended on one business just outside of Kennewick Wednesday afternoon and seized 533 catalytic converters. This happened around 3pm at PDX Scrap Metal off 213507 East SR 397. This was the result of a search warrant obtained after a lengthy investigation into stolen property trafficking and money laundering, and has connections to a raid at a Moses Lake smoke shop and neighboring home.That's where a number of other catalytic converters were seized.
Police detectives were able to interview their primary suspect, identified as 51-year-old Eleuterio Domingo Sanchez Vazquez, the owner of C.E.M. Catalytic Converter LLC, and his daughter, 23-year-old Carolina Sanchez Villanueva, the owner of PDX Scrap Metal LLC. Neither was arrested and both cooperated with investigators. Charges will be forwarded to the Benton County Prosecutor’s Office for consideration at a later date.
Members of the the Interagency Narcotics Enforcement Team aka INET from the Grant County Sheriff's Office, along with members of the Tri-Cities Metro Drug Task Force, Benton County Sheriff's Office, Kennewick Police Department, Washington State Patrol, and the Pasco Police Department took part in Wednesday's raid
The investigation continues.