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Nine Pilot centers among those fined for alleged price gouging

Staff Report • Mar 19, 2009 at 12:00 AM

The Knoxville News Sentinel is reporting that more than 30 Georgia gas stations, including nine Pilot Travel Centers, have paid fines to the Georgia Governor's Office of Consumer Affairs over alleged price gouging in the wake of Gulf Coast hurricanes last fall.Some stations have to pay up to $10,000 in fines to the state, while others must refund money to customers who can prove they bought gas during the price spike. The list includes a $20,000 fine against the nine Knoxville-based Pilot Travel Center stations plus restitution.The stations are among 200 the state is investigating over complaints of unfairly raising gas prices when hurricanes shuttered Gulf Coast oil refineries and left several Southern states without enough gas.Under state law, businesses have to prove they were making the same profit with their elevated prices as they were before the governor activated the anti-gouging statute.In addition to Pilot, the state Office of Consumer Affairs said Chevron, Citgo, Kroger, Shell, Coastal, and Marathon Ashland gas stations also paid fines, as well as several other locations.

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