District Attorney’s Office has initiated several investigations against county businesses for potential violations of Penal Code section 396, price gouging.
Since March 5, 2020, the District Attorney’s Office has received more than 90 e-mails and 40 phone calls reporting suspected price gouging in Ventura County. District attorney investigators have been contacting community members regarding these complaints and conducting plain clothes investigations at businesses suspected of price gouging their customers. The District Attorney’s Office has referred one case of suspected price gouging to another state’s Attorney General.
The District Attorney’s Office thanks the community for its vigilance in reporting suspected price gouging. Retailers are also encouraged to contact the District Attorney’s Office if they have been price gouged by their suppliers.
Price gouging is a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $10,000. Violators may also be subject to civil enforcement actions and penalties up to $5,000 per violation, plus restitution. County residents may report suspected price gouging by calling the District Attorney’s Office at (805) 662-1737 or by sending an e-mail to [email protected].
The Ventura County District Attorney’s Office is the public prosecutor for the county’s 850,000 residents. The office employs approximately 280 employees including attorneys, investigators, victim advocates, and other professional support staff who strive to seek justice, ensure public safety, and protect the rights of crime victims.
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