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Enzyte Fraud Gets Company Founder 25 Years

August 29th, 2008

Smiling Bob: Considerably Less To Smile About Now

Smiling Bob: So Much Less To Smile About Now

It started with an indictment back in 2006 and now a federal court in Cincinnati has sentenced Steve Warshak to 25 years in prison on 93 counts of conspiracy, fraud and money laundering.

Who is Steve Warshak, you ask? He’s the founder of Berkley Premium Nutraceuticals. Virtually anyone who watches late-night TV would be familiar with their “Smiling Bob” mascot and the quirky Enzyte commercials aimed at men in need of “all natural male enhancement”.

The not-so-subtle suggestiveness of the Enzyte commercials raised as much skepticism as it did interest in the product. Men were encouraged to send for a free sample or order the product but many soon found themselves improperly billed and/or unable to cancel orders. In the process, Berkley was able to amass almost a half-billion dollars in revenue.

An investigation that involved U.S. Attorney Greg Lockhart (Ohio, Southern District), the FDA, IRS and postal inspectors led to the September 2006 indictment of company founder Warshak. Following his conviction in February of this year, U.S. District Judge S. Arthur Spiegel sentenced Warshak to prison and ordered him, along with other defendants, to forfeit all its ill-gotten revenues.

Judge Spiegel said the case was “about greed”, and that company relied on the reluctance of dissatisfied men to come forward since that amounted to an admission that they ordered sexual enhancement products.

Source: Associated Press

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