Fuel Marking Programme yields more success.
The Guyana Energy Agency, represented by special prosecutor Gino Persaud, secured yet another success in the fight against fuel smuggling with a conviction against Sukdio Rampersaud of Golden Fleece, Essequibo Coast on March 30, 2012. The defendant was found guilty of being in possession of illegal petroleum and storing illegal petroleum contrary to the Guyana Energy Agency Act.
The defendant had been intercepted on February 11, 2010 when GEA inspectors sampled and tested sixty (60) gallons of fuel stored at his residence in the Golden Fleece area. The ruling was handed down by Her Worship, Magistrate Daley at the Charity Magistrate’s Court, who subsequently ordered that the defendant pay a fine of six hundred thousand dollars ($600,000).
To date, the Fuel Marking Programme has convicted thirteen (13) persons for a total of sixteen (16) offences, two (2) of which were guilty pleas. 13 new charges were filed in 2011 compared with 27 in 2010, 7 in 2009 and 3 in 2008. At the end of April 2012, there were 21 prosecutions engaging the courts.
Consumption of mogas (gasoline) for the year 2011 increased by 1.80% compared to 2010.
Gasoil (diesel) consumption by the oil companies increased by 7.24% compared to the previous year. The increase in gasoil consumption correlates with the overall sustained growth of the economy and decreased availability of smuggled fuel, which may be attributed to the success of the monitoring and enforcement activities of the Fuel Marking Programme.
In fact, it is laudable that from 2006 to 2011, the percentage of identified sites found with illegal fuel has progressively decreased from 34% in 2006 to 2% in 2011.
The Guyana Energy Agency looks forward to such future accomplishments, made possible mainly with the co-operation of the public. Remember you can do your Part in the Battle to Stamp out Smuggling. When smugglers engage in illegal trade, they evade taxes and rob their fellow citizens since they divert the revenue that was intended for the development of our country to their own selfish needs. Smuggling covers a whole range of illegal activities such as: Counterfeiting- including forged money and documents, contraband goods such as foodstuff, fuel, ammunition and drugs.
In its rigorous stand against fuel smuggling, the GEA continues to intensify its enforcement operations and encourages all persons who may have information relating to fuel smuggling and possession of illegal fuel to contact the Agency at 226-0394 or 624-5905.
Remember, Smuggling affects everyone!