FTC Awaits Judgment for Diet Pill Maker That Violated Court Order

FTC Awaits Judgment for Diet Pill Maker That Violated Court Order
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August 20, 2014

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is waiting on a ruling from a federal judge that would determine the fate of the dietary supplement producers that violated a court order issued in May.

Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals was ordered in May to pay a $40 million fine for violating a 2008 court order related to the sale of the supplements. Despite an order to stop marketing and selling the supplements as fat-burners and appetite suppressants, the company continued to do so.

The May order also required that the company pull Fastin, Lipodrene, Benzedrine, Stimerex-ES from store shelves. The FTC is looking for jail time for company CEO Jared Wheat because he failed to ensure the products were fully recalled.

In 2004 the FTC filed a complaint against Hi-Tech and charged them with making deceptive claims about the efficacy and safety of weight loss supplements, Thermalean and Lipodrene, and an erectile dysfunction treatment called Spontane-ES.

In December 2008, a federal district court ordered the company to pay $15.8 million and permanently barred the defendants from claiming that their products caused rapid or substantial weight or fat loss, or affected body fat, appetite or metabolism unless they there is substantial scientific evidence to back them up.

According to the FTC complaint, the company began making claims about similar drugs in 2009. They were found in contempt in 2013 and issued a final order in 2014.