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Oil field theft is costing American consumers 17 cents out of every dollar they pay at the gas pump.

So says Joe Dickerson, president of the Corporate Asset Protection Services. The problem has boomed in last few years as rising world oil prices dramatically increased the value of oil and the equipment used to discover and produce it.

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Included in the 17 cent figure are not only the direct costs, such as replacing stolen oil field equipment, but also indirect costs like the expense of resulting drilling delays and related detective and legal fees.

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