Ralph’s supermarket, which is owned by Kroger, has been accused of criminally overcharging customers by the LA city attorney’s office, says the LA Times.
The city attorney says that undercover inspections at 14 grocery stores across LA found that customers were being overcharged for prepackaged and weighed products, such as fried chicken and various salads.
Kroger and Ralphs have been charged with “14 counts of false and misleading advertising, 18 violations of unlawful computation of value, nine violations of selling prepackaged commodities in less quantity than represented and 18 violations of false labeling.”
The inspectors found that packages of salad that were short by 5% and fried chicken that was short by 3.5%. This isn’t the first time Ralph’s has run into this problem — they were also busted 2008 and 2009 and paid thousands in fines.
Kroger told the LA Times that they are “taking it seriously:”
Kroger spokeswoman Meghan Glynn said the company “takes allegations such as these seriously. We are conducting our own investigation and will take corrective actions as necessary.”
They’ll have little choice but to put on a serious face as the case could result in fines and penalties of up to $256,000 per defendant.
RALPH’S GROCERY AND PARENT COMPANY
CHARGED FOR OVERBILLING CUSTOMERS (PDF) [LA City Attorney]
Ralphs accused of overcharging customers, false advertising [LA Times] (Thanks, Al!)