(1) For the purposes of this section, the following terms shall have the meanings herein ascribed:
(a) “Person” means a natural person, corporation, trust, partnership, incorporated or unincorporated association, or any other legal entity.
(b) “State of emergency” has the meaning ascribed in Section 33-15-5 .
(c) “Local emergency” has the meaning ascribed in Section 33-15-5 .
(d) “Emergency impact area” has the meaning ascribed in Section 33-15-5 .
(e) “Value received” means the consideration or payment given for the purchase of goods and services.
(2) Whenever, under the Mississippi Emergency Management Law, Sections 33-15-1 through 33-15-49 , a state of emergency or a local emergency is declared to exist in this state, then the value received for all goods and services sold within the designated emergency impact area shall not exceed the prices ordinarily charged for comparable goods or services in the same market area at or immediately before the declaration of a state of emergency or local emergency. However, the value received may include: any expenses, the cost of the goods and services which are necessarily incurred in procuring such goods and services during a state of emergency or local emergency. The prices ordinarily charged for comparable goods or services in the same market area do not include temporarily discounted goods or services. The same market area does not necessarily mean a single provider of goods or services.
(3) Any person who knowingly and willfully violates subsection (2) of this section, when the total value received during a twenty-four-hour period is Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00) or more, shall be guilty of a felony and upon conviction shall be punished by confinement for a term of not less than one (1) year nor more than five (5) years or a fine of not more than Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000.00), or both.
(4) Any person who knowingly and willfully violates subsection (2) of this section, when the total value received during a twenty-four-hour period is less than Five Hundred Dollars ($500.00), shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction shall be fined not more than One Thousand Dollars ($1,000.00) or by imprisonment in the county jail for a term not to exceed six (6) months, or both.
(5) For the purpose of determining the punishment to be imposed under subsections (3) and (4) of this section, the value received during a twenty-four-hour period shall be aggregated.
(6) In addition to the criminal penalties prescribed in subsections (3) and (4), any knowing and willful violation of subsection (2) of this section shall be considered an unfair or deceptive trade practice subject to and governed by all the procedures and remedies available under the provisions of this chapter for enforcement of prohibited acts and practices contained therein.
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