Brothers who hoarded 17,000 bottles of hand sanitizer reach agreement with Tennessee

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The Tennessee Attorney General announced a settlement has been reached with two brothers accused of price gouging for hoarding thousands of bottles of hand sanitizer and other cleaning supplies.

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III announced the agreement with Matthew Colvin and Noah Colvin to resolve allegations of price gouging in violation of the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act on Tuesday.

On March 14, the Tennessee Attorney General’s Office began an investigation after learning about alleged price gouging involving emergency and/or medical supplies by Matthew and Noah Colvin during the COVID-19 crisis.

The New York Times reported that after the first coronavirus death was announced in the U.S., the brothers went on a 1300-mile road trip across Tennessee and Kentucky to clean out shelves at local stores.

After being confronted with the allegations, the Colvins cooperated with investigators and surrendered all their supplies, including approximately 17,000 bottles of hand sanitizer, to a Tennessee nonprofit organization. They also agreed to the distribution of a portion of the supplies to officials in Kentucky.

“Disrupting necessary supplies during an unprecedented pandemic is a serious offense. It became clear during our investigation that the Colvins realized this, and their prompt cooperation and donation led to an outcome that actually benefited some consumers.”

Tennessee Attorney General Herbert H. Slatery III

In the settlement, the Colvins are prohibited from selling emergency or medical supplies grossly in excess of the price generally charged during any declared state of abnormal economic disruption related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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