(STL.News) – Attorney General Ashley Moody today thanked the thousands of Floridians who filed price gouging reports during the COVID-19 pandemic. These citizen reports are providing vital information for the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division investigators working diligently to deter price gouging related to the spread of the coronavirus in Florida. Attorney General Moody is encouraging Floridians to keep looking out for price gouging.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “By far the number one way we find out about scammers and price gougers is through citizen reports. Because of these reports to our office, my team of consumer protection attorneys and investigators has recovered hundreds of thousands of dollars for consumers since the coronavirus struck Florida. These reports have also helped us launch investigations, remove posts offering essential commodities for outrageous prices and preserve vital evidence to help further our price gouging cases.”
Since activating Florida’s Price Gouging Hotline, the Florida Attorney General’s Office has:
Received approximately 3,800 consumer contacts about the price of essential commodities;
Made more than 5,000 referrals and contacts to merchants about allegations of price gouging, refunds and scams;
Secured more than $275,000 in refunds related to travel, leisure and product purchases;
Issued 69 subpoenas to further price gouging investigations; and
Worked with online platforms to deactivate 185 posts offering items for outrageous prices.
Violators of the price gouging statute are subject to civil penalties of $1,000 per violation and up to a total of $25,000 for multiple violations committed in a single 24-hour period.
For more information on price gouging, please click here.
For a list of the commodities covered under the state’s price gouging laws during the COVID-19 state of emergency, click here.
Price gouging can be reported by calling 1(866) 9NO-SCAM, visiting MyFloridaLegal.com or downloading the NO SCAM smartphone app. The app is also available in Spanish.