AUSTIN (KXAN) — A man is in jail accused of using cloned credit cards to purchase 105 gallons of diesel fuel and transporting it illegally.
On Sept. 11, an officer with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts Criminal Investigation Division was conducting surveillance on known fuel theft areas when he came across a suspicious situation at the Valero station at the corner of Rutland Drive and Parkfield Drive in north Austin. According to an arrest affidavit, the suspect, identified as Alexander Tamayo Cabrera, 29, was seen filling up an auxiliary fuel tank in the bed of a truck.
While the suspect was filling up the tank, the officer said he saw him take out a different license plate and change it out–which authorities say is common for “fuel thieves” to do to avoid being identified by surveillance cameras.
According to the affidavit, as the suspect was about to finish pumping gas, the officer tried to pull him over but he took off, knocking the officer to the ground. As he was driving away from the gas station, police say Cabrera threw out cards from the car. Police determined the cars were all fraudulent.
When the suspect was questioned, he said he was self-employed and delivers diesel fuel for a living to semi-truck drivers. Authorities say the stolen fuel is usually resold to other people.
Cabrera is charged with attempting to evade the Texas Motor Fuels Tax as well as several other charges.