Missouri doctor faces $500 billion in FTC fines for promoting vitamin D3 during pandemic

A St. Louis chiropractor could face more than $500 billion in civil penalties in a federal lawsuit alleging he profited from the sale of infringing vitamin D and zinc products of the COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act.

“The feds are suing me for half a trillion dollars…for telling people to take vitamins,” said Dr. Eric Nepute.

Nepute said his case will go to trial in federal court in Missouri in March.

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) filed the 27-page complaint in April 2021. It alleges, among other things, that Nepute profited from the online sale of vitamin D and zinc products during the public health emergency. COVID-19.

dr. Antoine Fauci responds to accusations by Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) as he testifies before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, on Capitol Hill in Washington on July 20, 2021. (J. Scott Applewhite/Getty Images)

Nepute, 41, is a licensed chiropractor and owner of the Nepute Wellness Center in St. Louis. He is also the owner of Quickwork, a limited liability company doing business as Wellness Warrior.

The government complaint alleges that Nepute, through social media and internet advertising, promoted and sold “Wellness Warrior Vita D” and other products as drugs capable of treating or preventing COVID-19.

“From June 2020 at the latest, [Nepute] began announcing a protocol for customers to follow to protect against, prevent or treat COVID-19. This protocol, which has varied over time, advises consumers to take [daily] substantial amounts of emulsified vitamin D3 and zinc,” found in Wellness Warrior products, the complaint states.

The complaint also claimed that “no published study proves that vitamin D protects, treats or prevents COVID-19”.

According to the lawsuit, Nepute’s “lack of factual or scientific basis for these claims [are] frequently accompanied by equally unsubstantiated claims about applicable science.

“In short, the defendants sell their products by disseminating information, by exploiting fears [amid] a pandemic and presenting a significant risk to public health and safety.

However, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention state that vitamin D is “essential for bone health as well as muscle and nerve function.” [and] helps the immune system fight bacteria and viruses.

Epoch Times Photo
Missouri chiropractor Dr. Eric Napute faces civil penalties totaling more than $500 billion in a government case that claims he fraudulently profited from the sale and promotion of vitamin D3 and zinc during the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19. (Courtesy of Dr. Eric Napute)

Despite numerous settlement and arbitration offers, Nepute has rejected any out-of-court resolution and is confident that his case is strong enough to stand trial.

“The only reason they’re going after me — and they said so — is because I’m the first doctor they sued, and they want to set a precedent,” Nepute said.

“They said they wouldn’t stop until they had ‘blood on their sword’. It’s literally from the mouth of the FTC.

Nepute said his vocal stance in support of vitamin D and zinc as immune boosters — including his free public distribution of 2 million tablets during the pandemic — has caught the attention of the federal government.

At the time, the government focused on the emergency authorized use of COVID-19 vaccines as the only safe and effective treatment for the disease.

“The [FTC is] pushing this because it’s political,” Nepute told The Epoch Times. “I spent $3.5 million defending myself. The only tactic they have is to drag this out, so I can’t afford to sue him.

Nepute’s attorneys recently filed a motion to dismiss the government’s case on summary judgment, including over 10 million alleged violations of the COVID-19 Consumer Protection Act of 2020 and 12 million violations of the law. FTC.

Each alleged violation is punishable by a maximum civil fine of $43,792 for a total of more than $500 billion – “exceeding the gross domestic product of Austria, Nigeria and all but 25 countries”, according to the motion.

Frontline attorney Tom Renz of Ohio is Nepute’s counsel in this case.

“The problem with this is a wrongful prosecution, in my view,” Renz said, “because [Nepute] didn’t lie. He did not commit fraud. He said it would boost your immune system, and it’s true. Both [vitamin D and zinc] are well-known mechanisms for boosting your immune system.

“It just haunts him because he was outspoken about using vitamin D and zinc, and he didn’t like the jab – that’s all it is. He had a big following and they wanted make him an example,” Renz told The Epoch Times.

“There is no legal basis for them to move on this – none.”

Renz pointed to statements by Dr. Anthony Fauci, who said during an Instagram live stream that vitamin D “impacts your susceptibility to infections.”

“So I wouldn’t mind recommending, and I do it myself while taking vitamin D supplements.”

In September 2020, researchers from the University of Chicago Medicine published a report that found a link between vitamin D deficiency and COVID-19 infection.

“Vitamin D is important for the functioning of the immune system and vitamin D supplements have already been shown to reduce the risk of viral respiratory tract infections,” said study lead author David Meltzer. Chief of Hospital Medicine at UChicago Medicine.

“Our statistical analysis suggests this may be true for COVID-19 infection.”

Renz said: “Anthony Fauci said you should use vitamin D. Why don’t they sue Fauci?”

“I want to know when the FTC is going after vaccine companies and officials who promote the lie ‘that COVID-19 vaccines stop transmission.

“I want to know why it’s OK for Anthony Fauci to say the vaccine stops transmission even though he knew it was wrong at the time, and we can show he knew it was wrong.”

“I spent all of my life savings” defending myself against the FTC lawsuit, Nepute said. “I just sold a property. I sold a car. I sold everything to defend myself. I could have settled down and left, but that’s not the right thing to do.

“What I’m talking about isn’t rocket science. What I did was repeat the medical literature and provide solutions for people who thought they didn’t have a solution to anything.

In September 2009, pharmaceutical manufacturer Pfizer agreed to pay $2.3 billion for making false claims to promote four drugs – the largest health care fraud settlement in the history of the US Department of Health. Justice. The pharmaceutical company also manufactures one of three COVID-19 vaccines.

Allan Stein

Follow

Allan Stein is an Epoch Times reporter who covers the state of Arizona.

Comments are closed.