Mex­ico’s new leader to tar­get costly fuel theft

The Dallas Morning News - - World -

MEX­ICO CITY — Pres­i­dent An­drés Manuel López Obrador said Fri­day that the coun­try loses $2.5 bil­lion to $3.5 bil­lion an­nu­ally to fuel thieves who drill il­le­gal taps into govern­ment pipe­lines.

The il­licit fuel­theft in­dus­try in­volves not just drilling taps but also brib­ing or threat­en­ing oil com­pany em­ploy­ees, steal­ing tank trucks to carry the fuel, and turf bat­tles be­tween ri­val gangs. That ri­valry has caused a surge in the num­ber of homi­cides in states like Gua­na­ju­ato, where fuel theft is ram­pant.

López Obrador promised to en­act leg­is­la­tion with stiffer pun­ish­ments for the crime.

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