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Bogus claims found despite evasive tactics

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Michigan businessman Tony Pham faces up to 25 years in prison and $500,000 in fines after pleading guilty to fraudulently marketing dietary supplements online with illegal claims that the products could prevent, treat or cure diseases, including diabetes. The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of Missouri said July 2 that Pham in 2005 and 2006 sold $11.95 million in supplements from Web sites operated by Techmedica Health, Inc., of Grand Rapids. Pham, who will forfeit his sales from those years, claimed six products were "proven reliable through clinical testing" for treating and preventing various diseases. He fabricated testimonials and professional endorsements, and impeded FDA's investigation by using "mirror image technology" to display a different version of his Web sites when accessed from FDA network computers, according to a release. Under FDA regulations, Techmedia's products are unapproved and misbranded drugs because their labels do not bear adequate directions for use. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled later

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