San Diego

Shell Inc. Investigates Claim That Gas Station Denied Service to CBP Officers

An investigation is underway into allegations that a gas station in San Ysidro denied gasoline to U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers, officials confirmed.

Shell Oil Products Company is investigating accusations that one of its San Ysidro franchise locations told border patrol agents they would not be served and shut off the gas pump while they were filling up their tanks, accusations first brought to light in an online blog that supports law enforcement.

According to the blog, a border patrol agent and four colleagues went into the small convenience store at a Shell franchise on San Ysidro Boulevard, about a mile from the San Ysidro Port of Entry, to purchase some snacks, but were told by the clerk “we don’t usually serve CBP here.”

The clerk then shut off the gas pump while the officers were filling up their tank, according to the blog.

NBC 7 is working to independently confirm the information in the story. The officer quoted in the story was at first named, but the name has since been removed. A CBP spokesperson has not yet been able to verify the officer’s account.

CBP management is aware of the allegations and is looking into them," a spokesperson told NBC 7.

Shell Oil Products, the franchise’s mother corporation, is now investigating the claims, a spokesperson for the company told NBC 7.

“Shell Oil Products US takes these allegations seriously, and our Retail Territory Manager is currently investigating this issue. Shell does not condone the type of behavior alleged to have occurred, and we expect that third parties selling Shell-branded motor fuels treat every customer in a fair and inclusive manner. We respect and support law enforcement personnel and first responders across the country and are proud to have them choose Shell,” spokesperson Natalie Gunnell said in a statement.

Gunnell said that the gas station is a wholesaler who operates under the Shell brand and Sells Shell-branded fuels. The convenience store and day-to-day operations of that store are the legal responsibility of the owner and operator. 

The San Ysidro Shell’s assistant manager, Alla Alagha said the owner plans to review surveillance footage to verify if the alleged incident happened before any disciplinary action is taken.

“We're still looking into it and if there's any problems, we'll definitely deal with it," Alagha said.

"If it happened, it's personal; I'm just telling you that. If it's personal, that doesn't represent our station."

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