The warning is going out for people to ensure their home heating oil is secured under lock and key, following two incidents in the past week in which detections were made by gardaí of criminals with diesel siphoning equipment.
On Saturday, November 12, a householder at the Borris Little in Portlaoise disturbed thieves in their back garden attempting to steal home heating oil.
The perpetrators fled the scene when disturbed, leaving behind storage drums and a siphon hose.
Anyone with any information on this crime should call Portlaoise Garda Station on 05786 74100.
A few days before that, on Thursday, November 10, gardaí stopped a car at Newtown Cross, Crettyard, as part of Operation Thor, and discovered storage drums and tools for siphoning oil in the vehicle.
A male from the Portlaoise area well known to the gardaí, aged around 19, was arrested and brought to Portlaoise Garda Station.
A file is currently being prepared for the DPP.
With the cold hand of winter seizing its grip, the gardaí are advising everyone to ensure their home heating oil is secured, and it is recommended not to order large quantities of heating oil in one go.