Oklahoma AG Trying to Stop Pill Pushers

By Karen Kosko

First posted on 01-11-2008

A group of Internet pill peddlers may soon be forced to change their ways after Attorney General Drew Edmondson filed a petition for a permanent injunction against the company in Oklahoma County District Court.

Pure Energy Labs, Inc. and three of the company’s executives, Darrin Clanton, Brian Forrester and Chris Wilson, were named in the state’s action after the attorney general’s office received more than 115 complaints from consumers regarding the company’s business practices.

“The total monetary loss claimed by these consumers is in excess of $13,000,” Edmondson said. “We hope to be able to recover that money on their behalf.”

The company, which is based in Oklahoma City, advertises and sells weight reduction and sexual enhancement drugs under the names Phentrazine, Vivetra, Fialafil and Intensa through newspaper and Internet advertising. Websites utilized by Pure Energy Labs include http://www.usaveonpills.com and http://www.thintabs.com

“The consumers allegedly defrauded by Pure Energy thought they were signing up for a free sample of the products,” Edmondson said. “They were aware only that they would be charged a $4.95 shipping and handling fee. Instead, we allege they were automatically enrolled in a program where they would sometimes repeatedly be sent a 60-day supply of the product and charged $149.95.”

Additionally, the attorney general’s office alleges the company often continues to charge consumers who thought they had successfully terminated their membership in the program and that the cancellation process put in place by the company is unduly burdensome on consumers.

“Some consumers complained that even after they did stop the pills from coming, the company continued to regularly charge their bank accounts,” according to Edmondson. “The cancellation process itself was nearly impossible, because the cancellation links on the company’s websites do not work.”

The attorney general’s office is seeking a permanent injunction to enjoin the company and its agents from engaging in future fraudulent conduct. The state is also asking the court to assess a civil penalty of up to $10,000 per violation, order restitution for the consumers harmed by the company and require Pure Energy to pay the state’s investigative and attorney fees.