Kevin Trudeau, the veteran US infomercial, has been fined with almost $38 million after allegedly scamming customers for decades.
Kevin Trudeau, 48, has made millions flogging what he claims are natural cures for serious and potentially fatal illnesses.
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court’s decision that Kevin Trudeau must pay the huge fine.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has been after Kevin Trudeau, originally from Massachusetts, for several years.
The FTC said that he has made millions of dollars by telling followers that coral calcium can cure cancer among other claims.
FTC put the value at $37.6million as to how much consumers were defrauded by “deceptive infomercials” that Kevin Trudeau filmed in order to plug his book – “The Weight Loss Cure <<They Don’t Want You to Know About>>”.
On one episode of his radio show The Kevin Trudeau Show, he said: “Coral calcium is the best form of calcium.”
Kevin Trudeau then tells his listeners: “Every single one of you are deficient in vitamin D3 and calcium.
“If you take those two things, it’s virtually impossible to get cancer and it’s impossible to get sick.”
Kevin Trudeau, who claims to be “America’s number one freedom fighter and consumer advocate”, has also sold thousands of weight loss books, baldness remedies, addiction treatments and investment plans.
In 2004, Kevin Trudeau became to first ever person banned from selling a product on TV by the FTC but flouted the ruling.
He had argued that the courts decision violated his First Amendment rights but the appeals court upheld the decision and even suggested the amount he was being fined was not enough.
The 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago said Kevin Trudeau’s infomercials played 32,000 times after being told to stop by the FTC.
Judge John Tinder said: “The figure is conservative – it only considers sales from the 800-number, not sales in bookstores carrying his <<As Seen on TV>. titles.”
Kevin Trudeau, in an interview with ABC News, says he intends to fight on to defend his First Amendment right to speak and write freely, taking his appeal, if necessary, to the Supreme Court.
He said his only “crime” is telling truths that challenge big pharmaceutical companies.
The presenter has been making late-night infomercials for more than 20 years.
Doctors have expressed concern in the past about his book Natural Cures They Don’t Want You To Know About which has sold more than 5 million copies and appeared at the top of non-fiction bestseller lists.
His claims include: “The sun does not cause cancer. Sun block has been shown to cause cancer.”
Another one of his statements is that AIDS is “one of the greatest hoaxes and deceptions ever perpetrated on the American public”.
The FTC first came after Kevin Trudeau in 1998 for making false claims on TV. He claimed his alternative medicines could cause dramatic weight loss and cure addictions to alcohol, cigarettes and heroin. He even said the herbal remedies could give users a photographic memory.
More than 25 million Americans have purchased products from Kevin Trudeau.