Houston-based oil company in hot water over leaking industrial waste

HPD environmental investigators executed search warrant at ‘GXOil’

HOUSTON – Following a tip from a city code inspector, the Houston Police Department recently executed a search warrant at a Houston-based company called GXOil.

“There is probable cause to believe that hazardous wastes and/or industrial wastes and/or pollutants are being discharged into the environment and into or adjacent to a stormwater drainage system,” wrote Houston Police Department, Sgt. Patrick Morrissey.

Morissey painted a picture of a business with numerous suspected environmental violations in a search warrant application document obtained by KPRC 2 Investigates.

GXOIL repackages bulk oils, lubricants, and other liquids for automotive applications. It appears that most of the company’s sales are wholesale transactions to local mechanics.

Since this report was published, an attorney representing GX Oil responded to our requests for comment saying in part, “My client has not contaminated or leaked industrial waste, and we strongly dispute your story.” You can read their entire statement below.

KPRC 2 Investigates found a number of the large containers and oil barrels in the company’s fenced yard appeared to be in disrepair. HPD found the same.

HPD believes the unpermitted activity is taking place at the location, according to the search warrant.

Typically, both the city and the state would issue permits for a business of this classification to operate legally.

GXOil holds no current permits of any variety. However, the business owner says they did have a permit from the state, only it expired.

Inside the facility, there are numerous puddles of fluids that appear to be GXOil’s product, perhaps mixed with rainwater.

The roof of the facility at 1335-D Boyle St. does not appear to be watertight.

Excerpt from Houston Police Dept. search warrant document. Warrant was served at GXOil in East Houston. (KPRC-TV)

Company Response

GXOil CEO, Antonio Gonzalez, initially appeared to decline to return our email message and phone call.

KPRC 2 Investigates did find Gonzalez one day recently in front of his Denver Harbor area business and asked him a series of questions.

“I’m trying to cooperate as much as I can. I’m trying to clean, as you’ve seen, the place, as much as we can, as fast as we can,” Gonzalez said.

“Do you expect to be criminally charged?” KPRC 2 reporter, Joel Eisenbaum, asked.

“I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know what they have or what they took but, what I mean, I know they took samples, but I don’t know,” Gonzalez said.

GXOil faces Civil Lawsuits

Two separate companies have filed civil lawsuits against GXOil for failure to deliver products or provide refunds. Each lawsuit contains allegations of fraud that have not been proven in court.

Complete statement by Mr. Gonzalez’s attorney:

“I represent GX Oil and Antonio Gonzalez. Mr. Gonzalez forwarded me your email regarding your proposed story regarding GX oil’s civil lawsuits. I am amazed you chose a small minority-owned business like GX Oil to write your story on civil lawsuits. GX Oil will defend all cases and disputes their substance. Every company faces civil suits, and your proposed reporting will hurt my client’s potential business and goodwill. I suggest that you not publish this story. Your previous video has created a false narrative about my client’s business practices and is hurting its business. My client has not contaminated or leaked industrial waste, and we strongly dispute your story.”

Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Response

“The information provided was for a criminal case in which TCEQ’s Environmental Crimes Unit was not involved. The TCEQ Houston Regional Office has not received any complaints regarding this facility, and the City of Houston has not requested TCEQ assistance on this case,” Victoria Cann, TCEQ Media Relations Specialist, wrote via email.

Reporting Illegal Dumping / Suspected Hazardous Waste

TCEQ: call us toll-free at (888) 777-3186 (24 hours), OR. contact your local regional office. Or email us at complaint@tceq.texas.gov.

HPD Environmental Investigations Unit: (713) 525-3728

About the Authors: