vector image of an n95 mask

3M has filed legal action in federal court in New York City against Performance Supply LLC, alleging illegal price gouging and deceptive trade practices in the sales of N95 respirators that are critical in the fight against the COVID-19 outbreak. 

The New Jersey-based defendant, which 3M says falsely claimed a business affiliation with 3M, allegedly offered to sell $45 million in N95 respirators to New York City officials at prices 500-600 percent over 3M’s list price. The complaint seeks injunctive relief to require Performance Supply LLC to cease its illegal activities, and also requests damages, with 3M promising that any damages recovered will be donated to COVID-19 related nonprofit organizations, 3M announces in a statement to the press.

“3M does not – and will not – tolerate price gouging, fraud, deception, or other activities that unlawfully exploit the demand for critical 3M products during a pandemic,” says Denise Rutherford, 3M’s senior vice president, Corporate Affairs. “3M will not stop here. We continue to work with federal and state law enforcement authorities, and around the world, to investigate and track down those who are illegally taking advantage of this situation for their own gain.”

3M announced a pledge to fight against the price gouging of products needed during the current pandemic earlier in April.