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Thursday, November 10, 2011

Anti-Crime Program Offers Reward To Report Energy Criminal Activity

Energy Crime Stoppers Expands to Pennsylvania's Marcellus Shale

HOUSTON, Nov. 10, 2011 -- Energy Crime Stoppers, an anti-crime program launched three years ago in Texas by the Energy Security Council (ESC), expands into Pennsylvania. The announcement was made today by officials of ESC and Pennsylvania (PA) Crime Stoppers. Energy Crime Stoppers will concentrate resources and publicity throughout the Marcellus Shale, a formation rich in natural gas that has attracted intense drilling and production activity.

Energy Crime Stoppers consists of a 24-hour hotline (888-645-TIPS) that receives information on energy-related crime from anonymous callers that is directed to local law enforcement agencies. The program provides a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to arrest and conviction, and is promoted by signage, billboards, stickers and other materials with the hotline number. The program offers a computer application for automating the reporting process that can be downloaded to cell phones and still maintain anonymity. Costs of Energy Crime Stoppers are borne completely by the 130 member companies of ESC.

"We're excited to have PA Crime Stoppers join with us in preventing and prosecuting energy-related crime," said Susan Rogers, who directs Energy Crime Stoppers and is executive director, Odessa Crime Stoppers program. "Pennsylvania is the ninth state where Energy Crime Stoppers operates. It has proved to be an important and effective deterrent with no costs to law enforcement, the state or local communities." Pennsylvania joins Texas, Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Oklahoma, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming as states with Energy Crime Stoppers.

"We believe Energy Crime Stoppers will be an important complement to our own crime prevention efforts in the Marcellus Shale," said Jeff Fagan, president, PA Crime Stoppers. "Drilling and production activity in the Marcellus represents a huge economic boon to our state. Its continued development requires that we have necessary resources on hand to prevent and mitigate crime and ensure public safety," Fagan said.

In addition to Energy Crime Stoppers, ESC offers training to state and local law enforcement agencies to familiarize them with drilling and production sites, safety procedures, and transportation aspects of the business, explained ESC board member Ed Dillard. "We've already conducted law enforcement training in Pennsylvania. These training programs, coupled with the hotline, have combined to create an important resource for law enforcement, and it's all paid for by our member companies," Dillard said.

The Marcellus Shale program will be coordinated with the assistance of PA Crime Stoppers, said Kira Lemmons, coordinator of the Pennsylvania program. "We're looking forward to merging our efforts with Energy Crime Stoppers. The resources they're providing will greatly enhance our programs," Lemmons said. Pennsylvania Crime Stoppers is an independent organization whose activities are coordinated by Pennsylvania State Police.

Crime stoppers organizations, law enforcement, energy companies and vendors interested in joining the Energy Crime Stoppers program can contact ESC, http://energysecuritycouncil.org . ESC is a security-focused international non-profit professional networking organization with a mission to enhance safety, security and business operations of its diverse member companies, corporations and associates.

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