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Suspects Arrested for Stealing…Grease?

December 31, 2012

Fred Thiagarajah

Unlike the Hamburglar, two men were arrested this Friday for stealing grease from the Golden Arches.  The Riverside Press Enterprise reported that after being burglarized a couple of times, the owner of the McDonald’s in Hemet, staked out his restaurant for hours.  Calling the police shortly after midnight to convey that he would be inside waiting for the suspects.

Around 1:50 a.m., the owner once again contacted police and said that the robbers were at the restaurant (2300 block of West Florida Avenue), stealing non-other than McDonald’s grease.  When authorities arrived they found two suspects sitting inside a Dodge Ram with their engine running and a large metal tank mounted on the bed of the truck.  After reviewing the surveillance tape police concluded that they had enough evidence to arrest Noel Portillo, 22, of Compton and Ricardo Robles, 24, of Long Beach.

The owner of the restaurant stressed that the burglars have been stealing thousands of dollars worth of cooking grease from various restaurants.  Why grease over hamburgers?  Well, because unlike burgers, grease can be sold to recyclers and can also be refined into biodiesel fuels.

For the full story click here.

At the very least, these two men are facing commercial burglary, pursuant to Penal Code section 459-460(b) and grand theft, pursuant to Penal Code section 484-487(a).  Commercial burglary, also known as second-degree burglary, and grand theft are both wobblers.  However, if the value of the grease is in the thousands of dollars, then each of these crimes will be charged as a felony.  For more information about theft crimes, visit out website.


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