Posted March 2, 2016

Seller of Hoodia and Other Supplements Admits Fraud

On March 1, 2016, The United States Department of Justice announced that David Romeo, principal of several New Jersey- based dietary supplement companies, including Global Nutrients, Stella Labs and Nutraceuticals International, LLC, has pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute three kilograms or more of meth precursors, money laundering, mail fraud and introduction of misbranded food into interstate commerce with intent to defraud or mislead.

Romeo instructed his employees to substitute dietary supplement ingredients with cheaper alternatives, which were then sold to other dietary supplement manufactures without their knowledge. For example, he sold a weight loss ingredient which he claimed to be Hoodia gordonii, but which was, in fact, a substance manufactured in China.

(See the Review article about Hoodia for more information about this ingredient.)

As part of his plea agreement, Romeo will pay more than $1.2 million, money which he earned through his fraudulent practices.

"This case underlines the need for both consumers and the government to be vigilant in investigating what the American public is ingesting in the guise of weight loss or health enhancement supplements," Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Benjamin C. Mizer, head of the Justice Department's Civil Division, stated in the Justice Department's press release.

The FTC first brought charges against Romeo in 2011 for selling "hoodia" weight loss supplements which did not contain any hoodia.

See Related Warnings:

Hoodia Supplements Containing No Hoodia Are Banned from California Counties

Hoodia Marketers Fined and Banned from Business

To read The Department of Justice's press release, use the link below.