Venezuela begins 'occupation' of grocery chain amid crackdown on private businesses

(AP) -- National guardsmen and state price adjusters fanned out across Venezuela Wednesday, implementing a military-style occupation with an unusual goal: Making sure shoppers can buy enough sugar.

The socialist South American government temporarily took over the Dia a Dia supermarket chain as part of a crackdown on private businesses it blames for worsening shortages and long lines. Embattled President Nicolas Maduro says right-wing owners are purposely making shopping a nightmare by hoarding goods and removing checkout stations. He is promising to jail any business owner found to be fomenting economic chaos.

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