ANALYSIS: Is Federal Law Too Vague to Convict Price Gougers?

April 7, 2021, 9:00 AM

What’s the market rate for N95 masks right now? While many have bought them at various prices over the last year, it’s difficult to identify the “spot” price for these critical pieces of personal protective equipment or feel confident in knowing whether an internet price is out of line.

If no one is really sure what a mask is worth, how do you know when one is criminally overpriced? A defendant in Illinois is using that uncertainty to challenge criminal charges against him under the Defense Production Act (DPA), 50 U.S.C. §§ 4512 and 4513, for hoarding N95 masks for...

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