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Illinois to crackdown on potential price gouging related to coronavirus pandemic

Illinois to crackdown on potential price gouging related to coronavirus pandemic

Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul said Tuesday his office will begin to take action to stop unfair pricing of items necessary to stop the spread of new coronavirus.

Speaking during a press conference, Raoul said his office will prioritize enforcement action for price gouging on essential medical supplies, such as protective gear, as well as other items public health agencies are recommending people use to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

“Let me be clear, I will use all the powers and tools available to my office to address price gouging in Illinois,” Raoul said. “The governor has set forth authority for my office to take action, if necessary, for any unreasonable increase in the price of medical supplies, protective equipment, medication and other goods and services connected to COVID-19.”

He said his office will reach out to retailers if they identify a case of apparent price gouging to try to mediate a solution. If that does not work, the office may issue a cease-and-desist order or seek an injunction against the retailer.

Any potential penalties for price gouging would be determined on a case-by-case basis, Raoul said.

As of Tuesday, Raoul said his office has received more than 100 formal complaints from individuals about potential price gouging on items tied to the pandemic, such as hand sanitizer. His office is working with local state’s attorneys to investigate the complaints to determine if further action is needed.


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