FTC sends refunds to buyers of bogus diet aids

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FTC sends refunds to buyers of bogus diet aids

By Michael Johnsen - 03/19/2018
As an example of how government agencies are cracking down on outliers purporting to be in the dietary supplement business, the Federal Trade Commission last week mailed 18,301 refund checks totaling more than $437,000 to people who bought bogus diet aids from Colby Fox, Christopher Reinhold and their companies, Tachht and Teqqi. According to the FTC, the defendants bombarded people with illegal spam email and used false celebrity endorsements and false weight-loss claims to pitch their products.

The average check amount was $23.91.

In June 2016, the FTC charged the defendants with paying to send emails from hacked accounts to consumers, making it appear that the messages came from their family members, friends or other contacts. The messages promoted the defendants’ unproven weight-loss products Original Pure Forskolin and Original White Kidney Bean.

Two court orders settling the FTC’s charges, entered in March and September 2017, barred the defendants from the allegedly illegal conduct and required the defendants to pay $500,000 for refunds to defrauded consumers.

FTC law enforcement actions led to more than $6.4 billion in refunds for consumers in a one-year period between July 2016 and June 2017.