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Medycinex Gets Busted

24 February 2010 No Comment

Medycinex Gets Busted

February 16, 2010

By: Johnny Justice

A business owner has pleaded guilty for her role in a conspiracy to fraudulently market dietary supplements over the Internet with illegal claims that these supplements could prevent, treat or cure a number of diseases. The supplement bandit made off with nearly $12 million by selling supplements that did not deliver on their promise (what else is new). Mai Lor pleaded guilty before a judge for her role. Lor was co-owner (along with her husband) of a company called “Medycinex”. None of the dietary supplements sold by Lor and her co-conspirators are generally recognized, among experts qualified by scientific training and experience to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of drugs, as safe and effective for use under any of the conditions recommended in their labeling. Therefore, each of these dietary supplements is a new drug. Of course, none of these were approved by the FDA, and their labels do not bear adequate directions for use; therefore, they are also categorized as unapproved drugs and misbranded drugs. The dietary supplements under scrutiny included:

* Diabeticine (later renamed Diamaxol, and also known as Glucolex)
* Digestrol (also known as Digesticine)
* Uricinex (also known as Uricaid)
* Cholestasys Rx (later renamed Cholestasys),
* Hyperexol
* Prolipamy

Fake Testimonials

Company web sites contained false testimonials, product information, and identification of medical professionals. They fabricated fraudulent customer identities using photographs purchased from Istockphoto.com. Testimonials attributed to these fake identities touted the effectiveness of the unapproved new drugs and misbranded drugs.

Fake Doctors & Fake Nurses

Techmedica also posted one of the Istockphoto.com photographs on their Web sites to fabricate a non-existent physician, Dr. Judy Hamilton, for the purpose of endorsing product claims about Diabeticine for customers with diabetes. The person identified as Dr. Hamilton was in fact a model from California. This same model’s photograph was also used by Pham on another Web site to fabricate a non-existent nurse, Bethany Hunt, RN, to tout the effectiveness of the unapproved new drugs and misbranded drugs.

Multiple Websites Hidden From FDA

The clever company operated multiple Web sites using mirror image technology. When each of these Web sites was accessed from an FDA network computer, they displayed a “sanitized” version of the Web site containing medical claims that attempted to comply with the federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA). However, when each of these Web sites was accessed from a computer whose IP address could not be traced to the FDA, they displayed claims that the dietary supplements could cure, mitigate, treat, and prevent diseases.

So What Will Happen To This Supplement Bandit?

By pleading guilty, Lor also agreed to forfeit any property derived from the proceeds of the offenses, including $11,954,648, three real estate properties, three vehicles and various bank accounts. Under federal statutes, Lor is subject to a sentence of up to five years in federal prison without parole, plus a fine up to $250,000 or twice the gross gain.

SOURCE: medicalnewstoday.com/articles/179164.php

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