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Wednesday October 30, 2013 MYT 12:45:57 PM
Wednesday October 30, 2013 MYT 12:46:50 PM
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican authorities arrested 39 employees of state-run oil monopoly Pemex while they were stealing oil from its Salamanca refinery in the central state of Guanajuato, the firm said on Tuesday.
The employees were arrested along with nine tanker truck drivers who were not employed by Pemex in a joint operation by the military and Mexican attorney general's organized crime unit that targeted theft, Pemex said in a statement.
Crude oil theft at Pemex amounts to as much as 10,000 barrels per day (bpd) and has been rising by nearly a third annually, a top official estimated in June.
Mexican oil production has slumped by a quarter from a peak in 2004 to just over 2.5 million bpd as mature oil fields have dried up.
(Reporting by Michael O'Boyle; Editing by Paul Simao)
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