KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — A large-scale criminal operation has been shut down, according to the Knox County Sheriff’s Office. Six people have been arrested following a 10-month investigation involving the theft and sale of catalytic converters.

On Friday, Sept. 3, detectives with the Knox County Sheriff’s Office joined together with the Blount County and Scott County sheriff’s offices and executed six search and arrest warrants at five different locations. The charges included theft and money laundering.

The following people have been arrested:

  • Tegan Lee Cain, 25, of Knoxville
  • Earnest Stephen Bradley, 42, of Knoxville
  • Rhea Christopher Browder, 32, of Knoxville
  • Edward Carmack Browder, 45, of Knoxville
  • Kalab Andrew Eskew, 38, of Scott County
  • William Duane Hall, 42, of Blount County
  • James Robert Glaze, 44, of Knoxville
  • Damien Ogorman, 65

“The work by these detectives and our supporting units is to be commended,” Knox County Sheriff Tom Spangler said. “I am very proud of them and honored to have them at the Knox County Sheriff’s Office. We are grateful for the work and cooperation by Blount County Sheriff’s Office as well as Scott County Sheriff’s Office. We are proud of these working relationships and what they mean to all of our citizens.”

Officials say that they also took the necessary steps to remove a “large and in-depth criminal organization that has been preying on the citizens of Knox County and East Tennessee.” However, KCSO is still urging people to remain vigilant and report suspicious activity. In 2020, there were more than 500 cases of catalytic convert thefts in East Tennessee. According to officials, it is unclear how many of these thefts are related to this organization.