Mexico's 'Red Triangle' becomes battleground for fuel thieves

So far this year, fifty-thousand litres of gasoline has been stolen from 600 illegal taps in an area known as the Red Triangle.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

An average of twenty-seven thousand barrels of petrol a day are stolen from illegal tapping.

In Mexico, people who steal gas have long been considered heroes. They illegally tap pipelines, stealing from the state to sell to the poor. But they now face difficult times, as authorities crack down on their illicit trade.

The thieves are known as huachicoleros and they used to be considered as the Robin Hoods of rural Mexico robbing from the rich state oil company, to provide fuel to the poor.

A recent government crackdown has dragged them into cartel-incited violence.

So far this year, fifty-thousand litres of gasoline has been stolen from 600 illegal taps in an area known as the Red Triangle. The ensuing conflict has cost fourteen people their lives in less than a month.

TRT World's Alasdair Baverstock reports.

 

Source: 
TRTWorld