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Germany records highest cases of fuel theft

Germany records cases of fuel theft due to the escalating costs of fuel, thieves are now taking advantage of the high prices to steal fuel from people’s tanks.

The beginning of the war in Ukraine due to the Russian invasion has led to unprecedented levels of fuel prices so cases of fuel theft have increased rapidly. Construction vehicles and trucks in particular are targets for fuel thieves and the number of stolen litres of fuel has reached 2,200 litres.

Since the outbreak of the Ukraine war, diesel and gasoline prices have risen and this has escalated the cost of living making people still waiting for financial relief from the government to go weary.

This is what is leading to the current crisis.

Who is the most affected by the crisis?

Construction site vehicles and trucks left unprotected in parking lots overnight are particularly affected by the fuel theft this is because of their large tank capacity.

Very recently was a case reported over the weekend to the Freiburg police which entailed large quantities of fuel being stolen off of trucks. The unidentified perpetrators are said to have broken five open tank covers and stolen more than 2,200 litres of fuel.

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  • Greifswald police reported the theft of an 800-litres diesel on Friday. The unidentified perpetrators are said to have penetrated two tanks in a woodland vehicle near L35 near Weitenhagen and the damages amount to about 1,800 euros.
  • Engelskirchen police informed the public of theft of a full diesel tank trailer. Unidentified persons stole an 800-litre tank from a wooded area in North Rhine-Westphalia. The equivalent value for tank content is 1,600 euros on site.
  • Tuttlingen police also received case of theft over the weekend, in which an unknown persons pumped several hundred litres of diesel fuel from construction machinery.
    The thieves broke the tank caps into three trucks and then removed a total of about 350 litres of fuel. The resulting damage is likely to be in the range of about 1,000 euros.

What are the charges for fuel theft?

According to Focus.de, Uwe Lennert, a traffic lawyer from Frankfurt am main explained the legal procedure to it. “First-time offenders face fines equivalent to one month of net income.” he said.

In the case of the so-called “commercial inspection”, the perpetrators face a prison sentence of at least three months (Article 243 Paragraph 1 No. 3 of the Criminal Code). In extreme cases, Article 242 of the Criminal Code provides for a penalty of up to five years in prison.