SAN DIEGO — A San Diego Superior Court has imposed a fine of $833,136 on Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market for overcharging on meat and seafood items.
Prosecutors alleged that Fresh & Easy had charged customers more at checkout for certain products than the prices listed on shelves and had marked meat and seafood packages at a higher price per pound than indicated on the shelves.
Weights and measures officials in 12 California counties recorded instances of price fraud during 124 inspections at 82 Fresh & Easy stores. The case was filed by the San Diego District Attorney’s, San Diego City Attorney’s, and Riverside District Attorney’s Consumer & Environmental Protection Units
The judge also ordered Fresh & Easy to implement a “Get It Free” program for the next three years. If the retailer overcharges for an item at the register, the customer will be entitled to $3 off the lowest advertised price, or to get the item free if it is priced at less than $3.
“Our citizens need to have confidence when they shop that the price advertised is the one that is charged. Actions like this are important to ensure that businesses deal fairly with their customers and compete fairly in the marketplace,” City Attorney Jan Goldsmith said in a statement.
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