HomeNewsBriefMexican Oil Company Reports Surge in Fuel Theft
BRIEF

Mexican Oil Company Reports Surge in Fuel Theft

MEXICO / 6 DEC 2011 BY GEOFFREY RAMSEY EN

Mexico’s state-owned petroleum company Pemex said that its oil pipelines have been overrun by organized crime groups, with fuel theft increasing dramatically this year.

In an announcement this week, Petroleos Mexicanos (Pemex) claimed that more than 2.4 million barrels of oil had been siphoned off from company facilities in the first nine months of 2010. This amounts to a 61 percent increase from the same period in 2010, when less than 1.5 million barrels were taken. Meanwhile, the oil company reportedly caught 100 individuals in the act of stealing fuel, 96 of whom were arrested.

The upsurge is likely due to Mexican criminal groups broadening their criminal portfolios to include oil theft, a phenomenon which InSight Crime has documented. According to Pemex’s press release, the company's pipelines have been "practically taken over by bands of organized criminals linked to heavily armed groups."

The Mexican government has raised the alarm over oil theft over the past several years, claiming that it costs the country some $1 billion per year in lost revenue.

But while the phenomenon has largely been blamed on the criminal elements involved in the country's "drug war," much of the problem comes from internal corruption. As a March report on the issue published in the Journal of Energy Security notes, "on some levels Pemex is not just a victim of oil-thieving DTOs [drug trafficking organizations]; sometimes, it’s directly involved." This was illustrated in February 2010, when the army seized 4 tons of marijuana at a Pemex facility in the northern state of Tamaulipas.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Tags

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

GULF CARTEL / 29 JUL 2022

Mexican authorities crushed 23 "narco-tanks," while 630 armored vehicles have been confiscated since 2018.

COLOMBIA / 26 OCT 2021

Two top police commanders in Colombia and Mexico have recently admitted to filtering sensitive information to drug traffickers while working…

CHAPITOS / 9 JAN 2023

Mexico has arrested one of El Chapo's sons, Ovidio, at a bitter cost. But will it make a difference to…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Escaping Barrio 18

27 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an investigation charting the story of Desafío, a 28-year-old Barrio 18 gang member who is desperate to escape gang life. But there’s one problem: he’s…

THE ORGANIZATION

Europe Coverage Makes a Splash

20 JAN 2023

Last week, InSight Crime published an analysis of the role of Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport as an arrival hub for cocaine and methamphetamine from Mexico.  The article was picked up by…

THE ORGANIZATION

World Looks to InSight Crime for Mexico Expertise

13 JAN 2023

Our coverage of the arrest of Chapitos’ co-founder Ovidio Guzmán López in Mexico has received worldwide attention.In the UK, outlets including The Independent and BBC…

THE ORGANIZATION

InSight Crime Shares Expertise with US State Department

16 DEC 2022

Last week, InSight Crime Co-founder Steven Dudley took part in the International Anti-Corruption Conference organized by the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, & Labor and…

THE ORGANIZATION

Immediate Response to US-Mexico Marijuana Investigation

9 DEC 2022

InSight Crime’s investigation into how the legalization of marijuana in many US states has changed Mexico’s criminal dynamics made a splash this week appearing on the front page of…