President Trump has signed an executive order making it a crime to excessively stockpile personal protective equipment that is needed by medical personnel fighting the coronavirus pandemic.
US Attorney General William Barr told the daily coronavirus task force briefing, the Justice Department has already launched investigations into people who are hoarding supplies and price gouging. He says investigators will go after people who are “hoarding these goods on an industrial scale for the purpose of manipulating the market.“
The executive order allows the President to designate some items as “scarce.”
AG Barr says, “If you are sitting on a warehouse with surgical masks, you will be hearing a knock on your door.”
No specific items have been identified yet and the DOJ will work with HHS to enforce the President’s order.
Price gouging has begun to emerge as a byproduct of the pandemic.
On Monday, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) said it had suspended some 3,900 selling accounts in its US store alone for violating fair pricing policies. The company has been working with law enforcement and sharing information with states to help combat gouging on such items as masks, hand sanitizing liquids and the like.
Have a healthy day, stay home!