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DOJ Targets Marketers of Dietary Supplements for Claiming Disease Treatments

In its continuing efforts to target unlawful activity in the dietary supplement industry, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) last week announced a series of criminal actions against individuals and companies accused of marketing products as treatments for herpes, cancer and other diseases.

The DOJ revealed all three individuals also are subject to consent decrees of permanent injunctions after they agreed to settle civil cases brought by the government.


Justin Prochnow, a shareholder in Denver with the law firm Greenberg Traurig LLP, pointed out that individuals and companies targeted in lawsuits by the feds have typically received a number of chances beforehand from FDA to address issues of noncompliance, but the defendants failed to do so.

In the cases announced last week, the defendants had received prior warnings from federal authorities. For instance, in the civil action against Lyman and Flor Nutraceuticals, FDA referenced a joint warning letter sent in 2011 by the agency and FTC. Lyman subsequently confirmed receiving the letter, and advised FDA that the company had ceased marketing Herpaflor products and removed products and labeling statements from the firm’s website.

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