ECTOR COUNTY, Texas (KMID/KPEJ)- The Ector County Sheriff’s Office arrested a man earlier this week after he was allegedly caught stealing hundreds of gallons of diesel fuel. Serney De la Caridad Cordero, 30, has been charged with Violation of Moter Fuel Tax Requirements, a second-degree felony, as well as Theft of Property, Resisting Arrest, and Evading Arrest. 

According to an affidavit, around 11:30 p.m. on October 3, deputies were called to a Stripes store in the 10000 block of W 42nd Street after an anonymous caller called 911 about a suspicious vehicle parked over the metal fuel tank lids. The caller said they’d heard about several diesel fuel thefts in the area via a social media post. 

When investigators arrived, they found a tan Dodge Caravan with fictitious plates parked over the underground fuel storage area of the parking lot. Deputies said they saw a rubber hose connecting the vehicle to the fuel tank. 

Investigators said they approached the driver’s side of the vehicle and saw a man, later identified as Cordero, open the driver’s side door; when the door opened, deputies said they immediately smelled a strong odor of diesel fuel. When deputies tried to detain Cordero, they said he struggled and broke away; he was caught a short time later and returned to the parking lot where deputies searched his vehicle.

Inside, investigators said they found a 300-gallon plastic white container full of fuel, they also found a 50-gallon container full of fuel as well as batteries and a pump used to syphon the gas from the underground hold. 

Cordero was arrested and taken to the Ector County Law Enforcement Center where he was later released on a combined $57,500 bond.