Kentucky Gas Stations Settle Gouging Claims

The Kentucky Attorney General’s office has accepted a $107,500 settlement from eight gas stations that were accused of gas-price gouging in the wake of Hurricane Ike last September, Legalnewsline.com reported.

Five stores owned by Pilot Travels Centers (located in Corbing, Williamsburg, Middlesboro, Franklin and Oak Grove) agreed to pay $100,000 as part of the settlement, while T-Mart in Franklin, owned by Krunal LLC, agreed to pay $5,000. Wingo T-Mary, owned by Mike and David #2 Inc., agreed to pay $2,500, the legal news Website reported.

"Many of us were shocked and outraged by the scope of the price increases, and on Sept. 12 we decided they merited a closer look," Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear said.

Consumers started calling state officials with complaints of gas prices rising before the hurricane even made landfall.

Prices were as high as $4.59 before landfall and went up to as much as $4.99 in some places. Some retailers were later found to have a profit margin of $1 per gallon in the one-week period following the hurricane.

Retailers with multiple complaints against them were subpoenaed, which included requests for wholesale and retail price date that was later used to determine which stations had gouged customers.

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