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(Neb)-Deceptive Advertising Civil Suit Against "Fat Dog" Stores Dismissed

By: John Axtell Posted at: 07/09/2019 11:40 PM
LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - A Lancaster County District judge has dismissed a lawsuit accusing six convenience stores along Interstate 80 of posting misleading signs about gas prices. Judge Robert Otte had held a bench trial in the 2-year old civil suit earlier this year.

        Judge Otte ruled Monday that the plaintiffs failed to show that Mark Wilkinson and his Wilkinson Development, owner of the Fat Dog stores, had violated the Uniform Deceptive Trade Practices Act or the Consumer Protection Act. Otte also ordered the plaintiffs to pay court costs.

       The Coalition for Ethical Petroleum Marketing and 5 individuals had sued Wilkinson 2 years ago, claiming his stores advertised extremely low gas prices but limited those prices to just a few pumps, hoping travelers accidentally filled up with more expensive fuel.

       Judge Otte said the plaintiffs failed to show that Wilkinson had "the intent" to deceive as required by Nebraska law, calling his practices "shrewd and clever" but not worthy of lawsuits. There are Fat Dog stores in Lincoln, Grand Island, Lexington, North Platte, Ogallala, and Sidney.


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