DALLAS — Four people have been arrested for allegedly
stealing 80 gallons of diesel fuel from a 7-Eleven gas station in Northeast
Dallas, police said.
The alleged theft happened Wednesday at the 7-Eleven at
10400 Garland Road, near Gus Thomasson Road.
Pedro Ruiz, Alfredo Hechavarria, Lazaro Echemendia Miranda
and Betancourt Barco face charges of engaging in organized criminal activity,
theft of a petroleum product and unlawful use of a criminal instrument,
according to a police news release.
The suspects were using an electronic device that allowed
them to attach it to the fuel pump without the pump tracking how much gas was
being pumped, police said.
The suspects used three vehicles during the theft, including
a modified pickup truck "that had been outfitted with an external fuel
tank," news release said.
Ruiz opened the front panel of the fuel pump and installed
the electronic device, police said. Hechavarria then pumped 80 gallons of fuel
into one of the vehicles while the other two men served as lookouts, according
to the news release.
Detectives from the police financial crimes division had
been investigating the suspects for allegedly stealing diesel and re-selling
it, police said. When they saw the theft happen during surveillance Wednesday,
they pulled over the suspects on a traffic violation.
Some patrons filling up at the pumps on Thursday, said
they’re shocked by the thefts and arrests, but not surprised. Gas prices have
soared in recent weeks, and diesel has been the most expensive grade of fuel.
The average price for a gallon of diesel in Dallas hit $5.307 Tuesday, a new
Some employees said the 7-Eleven location has been hit
multiple times by fuel thieves.