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Man Accused of Stealing Grease in Birmingham, AL


Man Accused of Stealing Used Cooking Grease

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT)- People steal small, seemingly worthless things.  Police are saying you can now add used cooking oil to that list.  Saturday a man was seen funneling grease from the deposit behind Rogue Tavern.  The restaurant dumps its used grease into the dumpster-like container to be picked up by Hide & Tallow.  The man was driving a truck licensed by Coastal Biodiesel.  "I asked one of the cops what was going on, and they told me they were trying to steal grease, and that it was kind of a prevalent thing," says Jake Davidson, General Manager of Rogue Tavern.

It may seem a little odd to be stealing used cooking grease, but there's actually a lot of money to be made in the dirty, smelly goo.  "You can render it down and make it into many different products, or you can recycle, clean it, and re-sell it again

The suspect was caught when, according to Davidson, two employees of Hide & Tallow tailed him for several miles.  They had heard about suspected grease thefts in the area.  They say the man made several stops at places that were not contracted by Hide & Tallow, so they took no action.  When he stopped at Rogue, a company that IS a client of Hide & Tallow, they blocked the man in the back alley and called police.

An employee of the Coastal Biodiesel tells CBS 42 the man that was arrested is one of their drivers, and they will take no further action until having a chance to speak with him.  They also say he has been released from police custody.