Amazon sellers blocked from COVID price gouging, funds recouped for New Yorkers

New York News

NEW YORK (WWTI) — The New York Attorney General has blocked three Amazon sellers from price gouging hand sanitizer during the COVID-19 pandemic. Letitia James has announced that her office stopped three Amazon sellers from price gouging hand sanitizer during the pandemic, and will help deliver funds to New Yorkers.

According to the Office of the Attorney General, Yvette Chaya d/b/a Northwest-Lux (Northwest-Lux), Mobile Rush, Inc. d/b/a Best_Deals_27 (Mobile Rush), and EMC Group, Inc. d/b/a Supreme Suppliers (EMC), will pay New York State over $52 thousand in penalties and reimburse consumers nearly $23 thousand for overcharging.

AG James commented on incidents that occurred during the early stages of the COVID-19 public health emergency.

“Price gouging on necessary consumer supplies during an unprecedented public health emergency is absolutely unconscionable and will not be tolerated,” said Attorney General James. “Instead of ensuring individuals could protect themselves from the coronavirus, these businesses operated with dirty hands by charging exorbitant prices on hand sanitizer and other cleansing products.”

The Office of the Attorney General listed the incidents that occured by each seller. They include the following:

  • Northwest-Lux sold nearly 1,168 units of PURELL hand sanitizer on its Amazon storefront from March 1 to March 6, 2020. Northwest-Lux charged consumers $79.99 to $129.99 for 2-liter bottles of PURELL®, typically $20.87 to $35.00, and $69.99 for 2-packs of PURELL® 20-ounce bottles, typically $14.88 to $35.10.
  • EMC sold approximately 1,884 units of hand sanitizer on its Amazon storefront from February 10, 2020 to March 4, 2020. EMS sold seven types of PURELL hand sanitizer products with prices ranging from $22.45 to $299.95.
  • Mobile Rush sold over three thousand units of hand sanitizer on Amazon from February 10, 2020 to March 11, 2020. Mobile Rush sold six types of Germ-X and PURELL hand sanitizer products with prices ranging from $19.99 to $159.99

According to the OAG, consumers involved in these price gouging incidents will not need to do anything to receive restitution. The Office stated that the companies are required to issue refunds to the credit card, debit card, or bank account that consumers used to make their original purchases.

The OAG confirmed that consumers will see the credit reimbursed within one to two billing cycles.


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