Deputy interrupts fuel theft, authorities say

Alejandro Rafael Ortego Perez
Alejandro Rafael Ortego Perez(CCSO)
Published: Jul. 30, 2021 at 2:47 PM EDT
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SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - A man has been arrested for allegedly trying to steal diesel fuel from a Punta Gorda gas station with a stolen truck, the Charlotte County Sheriff’s Department said.

Just before midnight July 29, a patrol deputy noticed a flatbed truck parked at a gas pump at a closed gas station on Jones Loop Road with an external 55-gallon drum on the truck bed.

The deputy asked the driver, Alejandro Rafael Ortego Perez, 28, of Miami, for ID and consent to search his person and vehicle. After consent was given, deputies found multiple blank swipe cards, a 55-gallon drum filled with diesel fuel, as well as diesel fuel covering the floorboard of the vehicle.

After obtaining a search warrant, detectives discovered the truck was reported stolen from Lee County.

This was not his first brush with the law, the sheriff’s office said. Ortego Perez was arrested for unlawful conveyance of fuel May 2 in Charlotte County.

Ortego Perez was arrested and charged with unlawful conveyance of fuel, grand theft of motor vehicle, and loitering or prowling.

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