Two New York men have been charged with trying to steal cooking oil from the Five Guys Burgers and Fries restaurant at 534 Post Road East.

After having lunch at the restaurant Friday, a retired police officer and noticed a white van with New York plates at the rear of the eatery, with its rear doors open and two men standing near the cooking oil tank, police said.

From his experience, the former officer suspected the men were trying to steal cooking oil or already had done so, police said. He followed them out of the lot and called Westport police headquarters and maintained contact with dispatch until patrol cars stopped the van, police said.

In the rear of the van were several large tanks filled with used cooking oil, as well as a gasoline-powered pumping device and a long, corrugated suction hose, according to police.

Christopher Hills, 41, and Kenneth Martin, 41, both of Mount Vernon, N.Y., each was charged with attempted sixth-degree larceny.

They were both released on $2,500 bond.