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Three Orlando residents arrested for allegedly stealing diesel fuel and credit card information

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

Jose Luis Hernandez Verano, 48; Alfredo Quintana Marrero, 43; and Leonardo Valdes Cordero, 27, all of Orlando, were arrested yesterday as part of an ongoing Florida Department of Agriculture (FDACS) investigation into an organized criminal enterprise.

FDACS agents identified three pickup trucks in several incidents of fuel theft in the Central Florida area, using counterfeit credit cards, card skimmers, and devices that alter the fuel dispensing pulsar that controls the flow of fuel from the fuel dispensing pump. The trucks are modified with gasoline bladders, each holding about 300 gallons, to transport the stolen fuel. The three men were allegedly seen stealing 1,478 gallons of diesel in Hillsborough County and 1,328 gallons of diesel from Sumter County.

Yesterday morning at 10:30 a.m., Gainesville Police Officers assisted FDACS agents who were watching pickup trucks parked at diesel pumps at the Circle K at 1515 N. Main Street, where the men were pumping fuel. Quintana Marrero and Hernandez Verano were detained, but Valdes Cordero allegedly drove away east on NE 16th Avenue and was eventually stopped in the 600 block of NE 16th Avenue.

When agents inspected one of the gas pumps the defendants were using, they allegedly found a pulsar device inside the pump. Agents reported that the bottom security panel had been removed so the device could be placed inside the pump. One truck, registered to Quintana Marrero, allegedly had multiple 300-gallon gas bladders that were full. Multiple skimmers and gas pump keys were allegedly found in a sunglasses case in the cab of the truck.

Quintana Marrero and Hernandez Verano allegedly had multiple plain gift cards in their possession, with small amounts on them that are normally used for false gas purchases, according to the FDACS agents. The Circle K clerk reportedly said that no purchase was recorded for the pump used by Quintana Marrero, although he was allegedly pumping gas from it.

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Officers also found a third truck parked nearby that was also outfitted with multiple gas bladders and a hollowed-out rear seat used for storing gas. A note pad was reportedly found in this truck with seven pages (141 entries) documenting gas that was purchased and sold. This truck was insured in the name of Quintana Marrero.

An FDACS agent reported that they had been following all three trucks during the day and that the defendants had “proceeded to complete the same scam” at a gas station in Silver Springs. The agent also reportedly had surveillance photos from the gas stations in Hillsborough and Sumter Counties, in which the three defendants are seen with the same pickup trucks stealing gas on March 9 and March 11.

All three have been charged with a racketeering violation from GPD and assorted Fish and Wildlife Commission charges, with further charges pending search warrants of the six cell phones collected and after calculating the value of the stolen fuel.

Hernandez Verano is being held on $15,000 bail, Quintana Marrero is being held on $40,000 bail, and Valdes Cordero is being held on $10,000 bail.

Francisco Medina Rodriguez

Another Orlando man, 37-year-old Francisco Medina Rodriguez, was recently arrested in Miami on an Alachua County warrant on similar charges and transported to the Alachua County Jail on March 16. Rodriguez was arrested on February 13, 2019, on I-75 for having illegal window tint and an expired tag. A subsequent search of the truck reportedly found 22 fraudulent credit cards and a “large manufactured fuel tank” in the back of the pickup truck containing diesel fuel. Rodriguez was released on bail and failed to appear for a November 2019 hearing. He is being held on $1,000,000 bail.

Articles about arrests are based on reports from law enforcement agencies. The charges listed are taken from the arrest report and/or court records and are only accusations. All suspects are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 

  • DEATHSantis is already placing Alachua County behind in this program, because they are starting out with lost funding due to the “mask” controversy. AND now that one of his “plants”(nobody has ever cast a single vote for) helped oust the school superintendent, here we go again starting with a new administrator. Good, bad or indifferent, SBAC needs some stability. I do not have a grudge against the incoming person, because I came from a county where the citizens voted for the superintendent—AND that is giving both the parents & teachers a voice/control, whatever he is aiming for. AND locally, I pay 3 times the property taxes for a much smaller house which is NOT on the waterfront. I’ve been very disappointed with the schools, since I moved here, because I came from a county with EXCELLENT schools & the teacher pay was more!!!!! Go Figure?

    • Sorry but your political rant is off topic. You should be outraged at these illegals coming here to steal gas from our community, and they planted credit card skimmers too! Due to Brandon’s lawyer-campaign donors letting them in here to make more crime for their greedy pockets!

      • Yes. Elizabeth made an out of place crazy person rant. Liberalism is a mental disorder. Maybe she’s
        Worn the face mask for too long or upset that people
        Aren’t wearing them anymore…crazy is as crazy does…

      • JeffK Liberal women who have no critical thinking capabilities are the biggest threat to our country.

    • Go back to where you came from Elizabeth…they
      Need you there. Why did you leave if the schools
      Were so great?

  • They need someone who will focus on academic achievement instead of way too much focus on equity. A sizeable segment of the descendants of slaves who have lived here for over 150 years have finely-tuned the art of “working the system” and playing the victim card. All of the lawsuits/terminations/resignations with the city government are no accident, the same for all the juveniles feeling entitled to commit crimes and run wild. Working hard in school and competing with other students for high grades doesn’t exactly figure into this plantation-victim mentality (looking to others to be taken care of instead of taking ownership of one’s life). If parents live in the ghetto because they failed out of school, it’s just not highly likely that their kids are going to be getting 4.0 GPAs and perfect scores on the SAT, but that shouldn’t stop them from trying. Everybody should just do the best they can without having an entitlement mentality and asking for academic handouts in lieu of performance in the name of equity. Everybody doesn’t need to go to Harvard; even FSU is a fine school in many respects. This is a story about people stealing diesel fuel, by the way.

    • Elizabeth, It’s the parents job to educate and feed their children. “Don’t
      Breed em if you can’t educate and feed em”. The school
      Board & teachers committed child abuse by forcing masks on kids. As far as these Hispanic guys committing crimes and stealing gas and making fuel
      Cost more for the rest of us: throw the book at them and
      Their bonds were way too low. They need to pay for
      Everything they stole and do lots of time in jail.

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