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8 Lawsuits Filed By State Of NJ In Response To Alleged Price Gouging

(Credit: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

(Credit: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images)

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey has filed the first lawsuits for alleged price gouging stemming from Superstorm Sandy.

Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa on Friday announced the state is suing seven gas stations and a hotel in northern New Jersey.

The gas stations are accused of raising pump prices anywhere from 17 to 59 percent higher during the state of emergency related to the storm.

The hotel is accused of raising room rates by 32 percent.

VIolators can be fined up to $10,000 for a first offense and up to $20,000 for a second offense.

The state’s Consumer Affairs Division has received nearly 2,000 complaints about alleged storm-related price gouging. Chiesa says about 83 percent of the complaints involve gas stations.

Chiesa says price complaints may subside, but other storm-related scams may increase.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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