There have been 18 official complaints of petrol stretching made in the county since May, according to Deputy Gabrielle McFadden.
The Longford-Westmeath Deputy was informed that 11 of the petrol stretching complaints in Westmeath have been filed with Gardaí, six of which were made in November.
“I understand that all of these reported incidents remain under investigation and that to date no charges have been brought nor files submitted to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. The other seven Westmeath complaints since May have been lodged with the Revenue’s Customs Service.”
Deputy McFadden explained that Minister Noonan had informed her in the Dáil that all reports of petrol stretching made to the Revenue Commissioners and An Garda Síochána are followed up as a matter of course and samples of fuel are sent to the State laboratory for scientific analysis where there is reason to suspect excise duty fraud.
“The Minister said that Revenue officers have visited and taken samples from every filling station about which a complaint has been made regarding fuel contamination, and these samples have been referred to the State laboratory for analysis. Enquiries into these complaints are ongoing.
“I understand that Revenue Commissioners are working closely with An Garda Síochána and share information and intelligence on this issue. Minister Noonan said he was satisfied the Revenue Commissioners are allocating resources to this issue and taking all possible actions to identify the problem and challenge any instances of identified fuel fraud including, where possible, pursuing prosecutions against offenders.”