5 men arrested during gas theft investigation in Brevard County

Deputies have been focusing on gas skimmers and illegal pumping

By Jon Jankowski - Digital journalist
Brevard County Sheriff's Office

Investigators said the suspects are accused of attempting to steal hundreds of gallons of fuel.

BREVARD COUNTY, Fla. - The Brevard County Sheriff's Office arrested five men during a gas theft investigation Wednesday.

Investigators said the suspects are accused of attempting to steal hundreds of gallons of fuel.

The following five men were charged with unlawful conveyance of fuel:

  • Yasiel Ventura, 29, of Orlando
  • Didiel Rojas, 27, of Hialeah
  • Luis Ortiz, 29, of Orlando
  • Jose Fernandini, 59, of Orlando
  • Jose Betancourt, 29, of Yankton, South Dakota

The suspects were transported to the Brevard County Jail on a $3,000 bond.

On Wednesday the Economic Crimes Task Force received a tip about two vehicles making suspicious transactions at multiple gas pumps in the county, according to the sheriff's office.

Authorties said they watched Ortiz and Rojas driving vehicles matching the description from the tip.

Investigators had the drivers pull over, and deputies discovered the vehicles contained unlawful concealed fuel bladders.

The sheriff's office said Fernandini was found at a gas station in the area driving a vehicle carrying an illegal concealed fuel bladder.

While the investigation in Melbourne was going on, authorities received information about suspicious cars in Cocoa.

The suspicious vehicles were driven by Ventura and Betancourt, according to investigators.

Investigators said each of their vehicles contained illegal concealed fuel bladders as well.

Authorities also found hundreds of fraudulent credit and rewards cards while searching the vehicles.

There is no word at this time if the five men were working together.

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