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Florida men accused of hacking gas pumps with ‘homemade’ gadgets to cut costs

By: April Carson

At a press conference, Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said, “This is not just happening in Harris County. It’s happening throughout the country. We definitely have seen an increase recently in gas thefts.”

The suspect's installed devices, dubbed "pulsators," were reported to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services by gas station owners. When these gadgets are working appropriately, they lower fuel costs and flow.

Because stations required customers to pump their own gas, the crooks could fill up their tanks for practically nothing and even resell the gasoline they stole. The scam was staged at two Circle K stations in Lakeland and Lutz, Florida.

“They can change the amount that they're being charged down to a nickel or down to a penny a gallon and they can pump 100 gallons,” Florida Department of Agriculture president Ned Bowman said.

Authorities said the men would go to one pump at a time and tamper with the device before moving on to the next. They were caught on surveillance video, and it is not clear how long they have been doing this for. The investigation is ongoing.

On March 12th, Rogelio Llerena and Yulier Garcia-Martinez were arrested in Lakeland after filling up a large gasoline tank. A remote control device was found in the car. On March 10th, Yordian Diaz-Benitez was arrested at a Lutz station for stealing diesel fuel. Marlon Rosel-Rodriguez was jailed two days later at the same location after attempting to insert the gadget into a pump.

With gas prices in Florida approaching $5 per gallon and other states, such as California, topping that price range, Bowman stated that authorities should anticipate to see gasoline scammers working overtime to obtain their fuel for less.

“I believe this will continue to spread,” said Bowman.

Gas station owners are advised to be on the lookout for large trucks that remain at gas pumps for lengthy periods of time, as law enforcement agencies advise them to do.

Gas thefts are being done in a variety of fashions across the country. In San Diego, several automobiles have been robbed of gas, with suspects drilling holes in car gas tanks dangerously. Thieves in Houston used a minivan with a unique trap door to steal nearly 1,000 gallons of diesel from gasoline station tanks on several days. And in New York, a group of men used a stolen truck to clean out the gas from underground storage tanks.

Owners of gas stations across the country are being advised to be on the lookout for suspicious activity, as more and more thieves are targeting fuel pumps in order to get their hands on cheap gasoline.

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About the Blogger:

April Carson is the daughter of Billy Carson. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Sciences from Jacksonville University, where she was also on the Women's Basketball team. She now has a successful clothing company that specializes in organic baby clothes and other items. Take a look at their most popular fall fashions on

To read more of April's blogs, check out her website! She publishes new blogs on a daily basis, including the most helpful mommy advice and baby care tips! Follow on IG @bossbabymav



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