Supplement Sellers Jailed for Failing to Complete Recalls

Nutritional OutlookNutritional Outlook Vol. 17 No. 8
Volume 17
Issue 8

FTC orders required Jared Wheat and Stephen Smith of Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals to recall their deceptive weight-loss products.

Two supplement marketers are now in prison for failing to recall their weight-loss products, as required by court order.

In one of the largest FTC settlement cases in history, earlier this year the FTC won a $40 million judgment against Hi-Tech Pharmaceuticals’ Jared Wheat and Stephen Smith, who were charged with violating a 2008 court order barring them from making unsubstantiated weight-loss supplement claims. Wheat and Smith were ordered to recall their products.

According to the FTC, those products remain on the market. A federal district judge in Atlanta last week ordered Wheat and Smith incarcerated for contempt until they comply with the recall requirements. Both have surrendered to authorities.

According to CNBC, Wheat was already imprisoned in 2004 for supplement-related fraud and was fined $16 million. He was also formerly convicted for smuggling drugs.

To be released from jail, Wheat and Smith must ensure products are not available for purchase from retail stores, issue a recall notice for each product, and display links to the recall notices on their websites.



Jennifer Grebow
Nutritional Outlook magazine


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