ESSOPS, N.Y. — Two Yonkers residents are facing charges for the theft of cooking oil from a town restaurant on Sept. 9. The Ulster County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday, Jan. 21.
Elmin Sanchez-Trochez, 33, and Paola Torres-Jimenez, 37, both Yonkers, were stopped at around 2:20 a.m. on Wednesday, September 3. 21, and was charged with petty theft, according to a press release.
Police said they were arrested after representatives investigating a “suspicious vehicle” at the restaurant discovered they were stealing used oil. The sheriff’s office did not identify the restaurant.
Both were released on court tickets refundable to Essops Town Court.
The arrest comes just days after Buffalo Biodiesel reported a spate of similar incidents in the city of Kingston and the town of Ulster. August 23 and 26, and in the New Paltz investigation into the theft. 30th and September 15th.
Ulster Township Police also investigated the reported theft and made separate arrests of three detective sergeants. Cheryl Benjamin and Detective Joseph Trapanes said Tuesday. Specific details about the arrests were not immediately available.
Troop F state trooper Steven Nevel said state police are aware of the biodiesel fuel theft in Troop F’s jurisdiction and are investigating it.
Trapanes said police are conducting a “massive investigation” of dozens of people involved with the FBI. The FBI is also investigating Buffalo Biodiesel employees, he said.
New Paltz police, who are also investigating the restaurant cooking oil theft, are investigating a possible link between Sanchez-Troches and Torres Jimenez, New Paltz Police Chief Robert Lucchesi said Tuesday. , and burglaries in the town.
In September, New Paltz thefts were reported at B-Side Grill and Gourmet Pizza. Police have an argument from the 15th and 30th of August from McGillicaddy.
In a Sept. 16 letter to the New Paltz Police Department, the Ulster County District Attorney’s Office, the State Police, the FBI, the Department of Homeland Security Investigations, the U.S. Attorney General of the U.S. Department of Justice, and the New York State Attorney General In the letter, Tonawanda’s Buffalo Biodiesel reported to Freeman a “break-in and/or theft” of cooking oil at its B-Side Grill and Gourmet Pizza facilities.
Since then, Buffalo Biodiesel has reported the theft on September 9 at Blondies Trolley Diner, Kingston Lanes, Kyoto Sushi, Mid-Hudson Buffet, Michael’s Diner, Kotoni Bistro, Super Bowl Cuisine in a letter CCed to Freeman. 23. It also reported thefts at Zenon’s, Miso Asian Restaurant, Eng’s Chinese restaurant, Gourmet Chinese, Broadway Lights, Kais Kitchen, Christina’s, Savona’s Pizza, Hung Fu Chinese, Bu Bu Ranchina, Kings Valley Diner, Bowery Dugout and Hudson Valley Current Event Sept. 26.
Buffalo Biodiesel said in the letter accompanying each report: “Please understand that you have (received) and will receive many such letters from us as break-ins and thefts in your jurisdiction are a significant and unresolvable The problem does not require action from your office and other law enforcement agencies at all levels. Not only does the theft of used cooking oil cost Buffalo Biodiesel tens of millions of dollars each year, it directly harms the individual restaurateurs who sell us cooking oil, you Restaurateurs and voters in the jurisdiction.”
Saugerties Police Chief Joseph Sinagra said at the time that a routine traffic stop on U.S. Route 9W near Spaulding Lane in Saugerties on June 9 resulted in the arrest of two people suspected of stealing cooking oil from a local restaurant.
At the time, Sinagra said he believed the arrestees, Francis Salas, 29, 104 Mclean Ave., Yonkers, and Miguel Guante-Feliz, 30, 3296 Perry Ave., the Bronx, were a group of part of man. Cooking oil has been stolen from restaurants in the area and sold to be turned into biodiesel fuel.
The status of their case was not immediately available on Tuesday.
Many restaurants have locked external taps or fuel tanks, and they contract with legitimate businesses to buy oil from them and legally convert it into biodiesel fuel, Sinagra said. Buffalo Biodiesel is a legitimate company that contracts with many regional businesses and converts used cooking oil into biodiesel fuel, he said.
In June, Sinagra said people who cut the pump lock before emptying the tank had stolen oil from 12 Saugerties restaurants in the past year.
The Ulster County District Attorney’s Office did not respond to multiple requests for comment.