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N.Y. AG settles with five more gas stations that allegedly gouged prices

By Bryan Cohen | May 29, 2013

NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) - New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has announced settlements with five more gas stations to resolve allegations of price gouging in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.

Schneiderman settled with the Holbrook-based USA Gasoline, the West Islip-based Pars Auto Service, the Harrison-based Sunoco of RBJ Service Station, the North White Plains-based Shell of DJ's Auto Delicious Inc. and the Yonkers-based A&S Texaco Inc. The monetary settlement resolves allegations that the service stations violated New York State's Price Gouging Law.

"As thousands New Yorkers sat in line waiting for hours to buy critical supplies of gasoline during the state of emergency created by Hurricane Sandy, some unscrupulous business owners dramatically and illegally increased their retail prices," Schneiderman said. "Today, we are continuing our enforcement actions against those who broke the law while their fellow citizens suffered. My office will make sure that businesses that rip off New Yorkers in a time of crisis are held accountable."

New York State's Price Gouging Law prohibits merchants from selling services or goods at an unconscionably excessive price during natural disasters. An excessive price is defined as a gross disparity between the price charged immediately before and after an emergency.

The five settlements come after 25 previous settlements announced earlier in May, bringing the total amount of penalties paid to the state to $185,000. There are four pending lawsuits against gas stations and dozens of inquiries into the practices of other service stations after Hurricane Sandy.

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