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Edmonton police charge 2 people with theft of $580K worth of oil and gas chemical

A file photo of an Edmonton Police Service vehicle. Global News

A 49-year-old man and a 44-year-old woman have been charged in connection with the alleged theft of US$580,000 worth of an oil and gas chemical, Edmonton police said on Tuesday.

Police did not say what the substance reported stolen was beyond describing it as an “oil and gas conversion chemical.” Police did not say from where the chemical was allegedly stolen but said it was from a “local organization.”

According to police, the theft was reported by an oil and gas company in November 2017.

“After conducting an internal audit, the organization noted a discrepancy in their inventory and reported that they believed more than 6,000 pounds of chemical had been stolen by an employee in late 2010,” police said in a news release on Tuesday.

READ MORE: Alberta police nab 2 men for causing $300,000 in damage during copper thefts at oil well sites

Police alleged that after the chemical was stolen, it was exported to the eastern United States.

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“Detectives believe that… [a] now former employee [of the company that reported the theft] stole the chemical and, with his partner, created a shell company to facilitate the sale of it to the United States,” police said.

On Thursday, Timothy Gray and Michelle Gray were charged with theft over $5,000 and possession of stolen property over $5,000. Timothy Gray was also charged with fraud over $5,000.

The Edmonton Police Service said its investigation is ongoing and that officers are working together with law enforcement officials in the U.S. on the matter.

“The EPS would like to thank its United States law enforcement partners and the Financial Transactions and Reports Analysis Centre of Canada (FINTRAC) for their assistance with this investigation,” police said.

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