California Business & Professions Code Section 13413 BPC: False Statement Regarding Gasoline

1. Definition and Elements of the Crimefalse gasoline statement

Gasoline is one the most frequently-purchased commodities available. Consumers must be certain that the product they purchase is safe and unadulterated. As a result, the California legislature has taken steps to closely regulate the sale of gasoline. Under California Business and Professions Code Section 13413 BPC, making a false statement regarding gasoline is a criminal offense.

To convict a defendant of making a false statement regarding gasoline, a prosecutor would be required to prove the following:

  1. The defendant is a person or other legal entity

  2. And the defendant made a deceptive, false, or misleading statement by any means regarding the quality, quantity, performance, price, discount, or saving used in the sale or selling of gasoline by doing any of the following:
    1. Misrepresenting the brand, grade, quality or price of a petroleum product

    2. Using false of deceptive representations or designations in connection with the sale of petroleum products

    3. Advertising petroleum products or services and not selling them as advertised

    4. Advertising petroleum products of a designated brand, grade, trademark, or tradename not actually sold or available for sale

    5. Making false, deceptive, or misleading statements concerning conditions of sale or price reductions

    6. Representing that the consumer will receive a rebate, discount, or other economic benefit and then failing to give that rebate, discount, or other economic benefit

    7. Except as otherwise permitted, selling a grade of motor fuel at more than one price and advertising only the lower price without advertising each of the higher prices in equal size numerals on the same advertising material

    8. Placing, letters, words, figures or numerals on any advertising medium offering for sale any goods or merchandise, other than motor fuel, if the advertising medium may be construed by any reasonable person as advertising a price of motor fuel

    9. Forging or falsifying any records or documents required under the law or knowingly keeping, using or displaying the false or forged records or documents.
2. Related Offenses

Other similar or related offenses include:

  1. Selling Short Quantity - California Business and Professions Code Section 12024 BPC

  2. Inaccurate Pricing – California Business and Professions Code Section 12024.2 BPC

  3. Forgery – California Penal Code Section 470 PC
3. Examples

A man owns a gas station that sells three grades of gasoline; regular, high octane and premium. Each grade is sold at a different price. In order to increase his profits, the man begins selling the “regular” grade of gasoline and representing it as both “high octane” and “premium.” This man could be charged with making a false statement regarding gasoline in violation of California Business and Professions Code Section 13413 BPC.

A man drives into a gas station after seeing a reasonable price listed on a posted sign. The man purchases ten gallons of gasoline using his credit card. After the purchase, he reviews his receipt and believes he was overcharged by ten cents a gallon. The man complains to the station’s owner who tells him that the lower price posted only applies to customers paying cash. The owner shows the man the sign which clearly states both the cash price and the credit-card price in similarly sized numerals. The station owner would not be guilty under California Business and Professions Code Section 13413 BPC because such a pricing scheme is permissible if advertised in accordance with the law.

4. Defenses to False Statement Regarding Gasoline

As discussed above, there may be certain situations where a consumer was confused about a discount or posted price. As long as the advertising used complied with the law, the defendant would not be guilty of this offense.

5. Penalties

Making a false statement regarding gasoline is a misdemeanor level offense. Those convicted can be sentenced to up to six months in jail in addition to costly court fines.

6. Criminal Defense for False Statement Regarding Gasoline Cases

If you or your business have been charged criminally with making a false statement regarding gasoline, it is imperative that you meet with a Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer as soon as possible. As a former Deputy District Attorney with over 14 years of prosecutorial experience, Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer Michael Kraut understands how best to defend clients charged with an offense such as this.

For more information about false statements regarding gasoline cases, and to schedule your free consultation, contact Los Angeles Criminal Defense Lawyer Michael Kraut at the Kraut Law Group located at 6255 Sunset Boulevard, Suite 1480, Los Angeles, CA 90028. Mr. Kraut can be reached 24/7 at 888-334-6344 or 323-464-6453.

Share |
Client Reviews
★★★★★
Michael Kraut is outstanding! He genuinely cared about my case and instructed my mom and I throughout the entire process. He was very clear on what he needed in order to receive the best results. He kept us updated until the end. I thank him so much for getting my charges rejected. I highly recommend him to anyone with legal needs! Shaquan Thomas
★★★★★
I contacted Michael with concern for my personal and business reputation. He was very reassuring and confident the entire time. After about 3 weeks it was determined that no charges were being filed by any agency and I was in the clear of any investigation. One thing that is amazing is just how FAST Michael is at replying to phone calls, texts, and even emails! We are talking under 30 minutes in most cases. That is unheard of for most attorneys! Michael is incredible and not your typical run of the mill attorney. For best results hire him if you feel like you might be under investigation or could face charges. Even if you know you are innocent it is best to take care of the smoke before it becomes a fire. Brad
★★★★★
Michael Kraut is-hands down-the best criminal defense attorney and I can't begin to thank him for all that he did for me and my family. I reached out to him in the middle of the night and less than a couple hours later, he had gotten back to me and scheduled a meeting. He's a no-nonsense attorney who knows how to get the job done! From the second we retained him, I had peace of mind in knowing that we were in the best hands possible. If Michael Kraut couldn't get it done, I knew that it couldn't be done at all. You can't put a price tag on your freedom. He was worth every single penny. Lida
★★★★★
Michael Kraut is an outstanding attorney. He was extremely professional, and straightforward, yet sensitive with my case. I am confident I made the right choice by hiring Michael. I highly recommend him to anyone seeking a truly experienced lawyer. Daniel Lepervanche
★★★★★
Michael Kraut - I cannot thank you enough for all that you did for ​my son. When I came to you I read that you used to be a district attorney but I never knew how much that meant until I watch you in court. I knew it took 3 months but the final day when I heard the judge say that all charges were dismissed it was all worth it! I will always be grateful for all that you did for us. A.N.