We’ve been following the saga of former bestselling weight loss guru and TV pitchman Kevin Trudeau for about six years, since he was found in contempt of court for violating a 2004 FTC settlement banning him from misrepresenting the content of his books. The Trudeau tale is nearing a final chapter now that he faces possible jail time after being found guilty of criminal contempt for misleading statements in his infomercials. [More]
How do you make a slippery late-night TV pitchman sit still and behave? If you’re a federal judge fed up with Kevin Trudeau’s shenanigans you put him in jail. Trudeau has reportedly flouted court orders to pay millions in fines stemming from fraudulent infomercials, and now the judge says he’s been spending money on stuff like cigars and fancy meat when he shouldn’t be. [More]
Now that Netflix is stirring up a whole lot of viewers for its original series like House of Cards and this little show called Arrested Development, other media bigwigs are trying to figure out how to get a piece of this sweet, sweet action. To that end, Amazon announced today that it’s planning five new TV series in the nearish future. [More]
Kevin Trudeau, a diet and disease cure-all peddler who has a rich history with the FTC, just earned himself a fat 30 days in jail for encouraging his fans and followers to email a U.S. District Judge. Last Wednesday, Trudeau posted a request on his website asking supporters to email the judge who is presiding over an FTC civil suit against him. The idea, apparently, was for Trudeau’s happy customers to convince Judge Robert Gettleman to go easy on the pitchman. Instead, it had the opposite effect. [More]
Chuck Norris is suing publisher Penguin and author Ian Spector over the book “The Truth About Chuck Norris: 400 facts about the World’s Greatest Human”. Among other claims, the suit states that the “book’s title would mislead readers into thinking the facts were true.” This means that apparently Chuck Norris cannot cure your cancer with his tears, he did not create a giraffe by uppercutting a horse, and he cannot speak braille. If only Kevin Trudeau could be so honest.
More than one reader noticed a remarkable similarity between FTC repeat offender and infomercial king Kevin Trudeau and Dallas do-gooder Bobby Ewing—er, Patrick Duffy. Which makes us wonder: if there’s a TV movie in the works about Trudeau, and there certainly should be, who should play him? Share the wisdom of a crowd and cast your vote.
Kevin Trudeau isn’t the only one writhing in the icy grip of justice this week—one-time magazine subscription entrepreneur Richard L. Prochnow was ordered to pay over $7 million a few weeks ago when the U.S. Court of Appeals upheld a judgment from July of 2006. Prochnow ran Direct Sales International (DSI), a bad magazine company that lied to customers and trapped them in a “buying club” that charged monthly fees and was very difficult to cancel.
Let’s say you bought a diet book that was advertised to provide an easy-to-follow diet that you can do at home and that allows you to eat whatever you want—and then, once you buy the book, you find out that it “describes a complex, grueling plan that requires severe dieting, daily injections of a prescription drug that consumers cannot easily get, and lifelong dietary restrictions.” The FTC apparently thinks that’s misleading, and they’re going after Kevin Trudeau (yet again) for it.