Ultimate Nutraceuticals is the focus of a lawsuit filed recently claiming the product Dual Action Cleanse (“DAC”) sold to consumers was grossly over priced and hundreds of thousands of consumers had their credit or debit cards charged without authorization for unordered pills, powders, or potions.
So it is alleged that while the product was worthless, the only thing that got cleaned out were consumer bank accounts.
This is not the first time I have heard similar claims against companies in the vitamin or colon cleansing arena.
A recent comment from Jenny said that at least one debt settlement company she worked for was pushing health products but not issuing refunds either. “People got caught up in a scam ordering health products and such then we at the Pure Nutrients side of AmeriCorp dealt with attempting to do anything but issue a refund.” – Source
The suit (source) states that defendant Klee Irwin is some kind of “master herbalist” with special expertise in the properties and applications of healing herbs and other “complementary and alternative medicine” (“CAM”) remedies, but in fact misrepresents the nature and effectiveness of his “natural” products by means of the U.S. Mail and interstate wires in order to sell useless or downright harmful merchandise at incredible prices, and then sends more unordered and unwanted merchandise to provide an excuse to charge customers’ credit or debit cards without authorization, from which scheme he has made many millions of dollars by defrauding and damaging consumers and the federally insured banks who issue the cards he unauthorizedly charges.
Defendant James Chappell is a California resident, holds a Doctor of Chiropractic degree (and shall therefore be known herein as “Dr. Chappell”), claims that “[h]e does not treat ‘disease,’ but rather teaches people how to heal themselves using classical, aboriginal, advanced quantum energy and natural healing protocols from around the world,” claims to be a board certified chiropractor but his California chiropractic license was cancelled 31 December 1998, claims to be a “Naturopathic (N.D.) Physician” but the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians has no online record of him, claims to be a “Medical Herbalist (M.H.)” but anyone can call himself an “M.H.” because there are no generally recognized standards for such designation, and claims to be a Ph.D. clinical nutritionist but advertises, and handsomely profits from, absurd nutritional theories and useless or harmful products that no competent nutritionist would have anything to do with, e.g., “coral calcium” that contains excessive and almost toxic amounts of calcium per serving, and A Promise Made, A Promise Kept, a book that claims to reveal “The seven all-natural ‘miracle’ elements that when taken in combination have been SCIENTIFICALLY PROVEN TO STOP—REVERSE—AND CURE DIABETES!”
With his pay for making the fraudulent DAC Infomercial, royalties from fraudulent books claiming to reveal the cure for diabetes, profits from ineffective or dangerous and overpriced “natural” products, and possibly with his commission on DAC sales, Dr. Chappell acquires and maintains interests in enterprises engaged in interstate commerce, including but not limited to James Chappell Health and Longevity Center LLC.
With the money he makes from DAC sales and access device fraud, Mr. Irwin acquires and maintains interests in enterprises engaged in interstate commerce, including but not limited to Irwin Naturals and Ultimate Nutraceuticals.
Mr. Irwin and Dr. Chappell (“Individual Defendants”) agreed beforehand to commit wire fraud by means of the numerous misrepresentations in their Dual Action Cleanse Infomercial (hereinafter “DAC Infomercial” or “the Infomercial”) detailed infra, which they made with the knowledge and intent that it would be repeatedly broadcast by free signal TV, cable TV, satellite TV, and online outlets such as YouTube and Defendants’ own websites to a nationwide audience of more than 100 million viewers, many of whom would immediately call the given toll-free number or order online, and thus lose money by ordering useless or harmful products and also by numerous unauthorized debit or credit card charges.
Watch the Dual Action Cleanse Colon Commercial
It is alleged Mr. Irwin and Dr. Chappell managed and operated through a pattern of racketeering activities, to wit, its only way of doing business is wire fraud by means of the infomercial, causing damage to Plaintiffs’ business or property, and its infomercial was intended to run indefinitely from 2007, as indeed it is still doing with no end in sight.
Mr. Irwin personally profits from each and every Dual Action Cleanse product sold, and on information and belief, Dr. Chappell gets a commission as well; but even if Dr. Chappell does not, he still conspired with Mr. Irwin to commit wire fraud, knowing that he would damage hundreds of thousands of people for years to come, and is liable for every penny of damages that Mr. Irwin causes by fraud and money laundering.
Mr. Irwin has displayed a pattern of forming corporations and then dissolving them or letting their status be revoked, to be replaced by new corporations, including but not limited to Klee Naturals, Vitasave.com, Omni Nutraceuticals, Inc. (formerly a publicly traded company of which Mr. Irwin was president and CEO and 41.5% owner), Omni Smartbasics, Inc., Crazy Deal Wholesale, Inc., Longevity & Health, Cellular Research, and American Brand Labs, Inc., to all of which Irwin Naturals and Ultimate Nutraceuticals appear to be the successors in interest.
Mr. Irwin has used all of these entities, as well as aliases or unincorporated associations-in-fact such as “Dual-Action Cleanse, PO Box 10451, Van Nuys CA 91410,” the putative sender of at least one shipment to Named Plaintiff, which is also DAC’s record name and address with the Better Business Bureau of Los Angeles and the former record address of Cellular Research, and “Klee Irwin Health Program,” whose name appears on Plaintiffs’ credit card statements, and operates all of them through a pattern of racketeering activity, to wit, his entities’ regular way of doing business is to misrepresent products and convince Plaintiffs to pay money for them, and preferably to give up their credit or debit card numbers, which his entities, agents, employees, and contractors use without authorization to charge Plaintiffs for unordered and unwanted merchandise (sent through the U.S. Mail, accompanied by brochures and invoices containing still more factually false information) at exorbitant prices, sometimes for months or years on end, damaging Plaintiffs and defrauding the federally insured banks who issue said credit or debit cards, and then Mr. Irwin uses the proceeds to promote the carrying on of further mail, wire, bank, and access device fraud.
All Defendants make their entire living by means of a pattern of racketeering activity that has damaged over 200,000 Plaintiffs in their property and business with no end in sight, to wit, Defendants deliberately communicate countless knowingly false and misleading statements every day through the U.S. Mail and over the interstate wires to deceive Plaintiffs into paying hard-earned money for overpriced, useless, and/or harmful “natural health” products and publications that few people would ever buy if such items were truthfully represented; and furthermore commit constant access device fraud and bank fraud by charging Plaintiffs’ credit and debit cards for unwanted and unordered merchandise; and then Defendants conspire to, and do, launder millions of dollars of proceeds from their mail, wire, bank, and access device fraud in order to promote and carry on further such unlawful activity.
Here is how Mr. Rodriguez in this case got involved. After watching an infomercial for Colon Cleanse he placed a one-time order for the product hoping it would relieve his constipation.
What he received was something different that what was advertised. It was a product called Colon Flow Pro that is alleged to be worthless, consisting only of 200mg vitamin C, 400mg magnesium, and 1000mg “Beneflow Proprietary Blend” of assorted bacteria, plus apple pectin and inert ingredients, none of which has the slightest “colon cleansing” capability.
Accompanying this shipment was a statement listing a $79.98 charge for the product, a clearly excessive amount for worthless and possibly harmful merchandise.
Also on the statement was a $17.49 charge for shipping and handling, greatly in excess of actual shipping charge through the U.S. Mail for a small box of pill bottles.
Without authorization, the defendants in this case hit the credit card of Mr. Rodriguez.
Apparently Mr. Rodriguez is not the only consumer that feels they have been treated badly by this company. The BBB oddly gives the company an A rating even though it has 497 complaints listed.
The BBB says:
Complainants allege receipt of unordered merchandise, and unauthorized debits or charges to accounts. Customers complain they provide the company with billing and shipping information for a one time purchase, but continue to receive additional merchandise, and account debits or credit card charges. Other customers complain the unwanted products are returned, or shipments are refused, but the company fails to issue credits or refunds as agreed. Complainants allege In some cases, refunds are denied based on the company’s contention that products were not returned, when in fact products were returned as directed. The company responds to some complaints by agreeing to issue refunds, cancelling shipments, or both. In some cases, the company instructs complainants to return merchandise before a credit or refund will be issued. – Source
One tennessee main claims the product almost killed him.
John Edwards is a salesman in Fayetteville, Tennessee. He bought into Klee Irwin’s Dual Action Cleanse program and says it made him deathly ill.
“After about five days of taking this product, about three o’clock in the morning, the sixth morning I got a real sharp pain in my belly”, says Edwards.
“About six in the morning it got real real intense, it was just like a knot in my belly, vomiting, diarrhea,” Edwards said. “I told my wife Teresa either call an ambulance or roll me to the car. I was in that much pain.”
Edwards says he couldn’t even stand up.
“I literally had to crawl.”
Edwards says he thought he was going to die.
The emergency room doctor said Edwards was the third person that had rushed to the emergency room with pain as a result of the product. – Source
If you would like more information about this lawsuit or you have been a victim of the Dual Action Cleanse you should contact:
2154 Dowd Dairy Road
White Oak NC 28399
Land line and fax 910 866 4948
Cell 910 876 7001