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Lawsuit accuses oil companies of colluding to keep California gas prices high

Roland Lizarondo
A gas pump at a gas station in Rancho Penasquitos, Calif. Nov. 16, 2021.

An Escondido gas retailer is lead plaintiff in class-action lawsuit against major oil companies.

As local gas prices continue to increase and as indirect consequence of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, a long-fought lawsuit that blames high California gas prices on oil company collusion may be coming to a head in federal court.

"The allegation is that they've conspired to keep costs artificially high in California, which has its own market for gasoline because of environmental rules," The San Diego Union-Tribune investigative reporter Jeff McDonald said.

McDonald joined Midday Edition Monday to discuss the class-action lawsuit with potentially tens of billions of dollars involved.


"The number of lawyers defending the case, and even bringing the case, is indicative of how much money is at stake. There's dozens of lawyers involved. When I was in the courtroom the other day, there were 24, 25 lawyers I think by my count," he said.

McDonald said a ruling could be coming as soon as this week.