Two truck drivers are facing four felonies each, two grand larceny charges and two for tampering with pumps in a scam that ran for nearly four months in Prince George County, Virginia.
Police say the diesel theft scheme cost a fuel station owner more than 7,800 gals. of fuel valued at more than $30,000 over a period of four months.
How Do They Do It?
The truckers used a simple scam that police said is being pulled by fuel thieves all around the country, according to a report by WRVR News, a CBS affiliate. The theft is accomplished when truckers either damage the fuel pump’s pulsar device or swap the pump’s device for their own device. The pulsars measure the amount of fuel being pumped.
The scammers tamper with the pump so it will register a smaller amount of diesel pumped when it actually pumped a different amount, police said. Before the damage is even discovered, the thieves have driven off with hundreds of gallons of diesel fuel they didn’t pay for.
“They were pumping hundreds of gallons worth of fuel here and the actual register was only showing 30 gals., so they may have pumped 300 gals. but only actually recorded 30,” Lt. Paul Burroughs, Prince George County Police, said.
Police arrested two drivers from Florida Sunday night. A small device was confiscated that was used to manipulate the pumps and has been logged as the primary piece of evidence against them in their upcoming court appearance.