TV pitchman Trudeau released after day in jail

Thu Sep 19, 2013 9:49pm EDT

Related Topics

(Reuters) - Infomercial pitchman Kevin Trudeau was released from a Chicago jail on Thursday, a day after a federal judge ordered him locked up for failing to pay $38 million in fines over allegedly false promises made in a weight-loss book.

The Federal Trade Commission sued Trudeau, now 50, in 1998, determining that he made misleading claims in six infomercials he produced promoting products that allegedly cured ailments ranging from cancer to memory loss.

In 2004, Trudeau entered a consent order with the FTC that required him to pay $2 million and banned him from advertising products in infomercials.

An exception allowed Trudeau to advertise books, but not the products he touted as cures. The FTC argued that his weight loss book include inaccurate information and violated the agreement.

In 2008, Judge Robert Gettleman ruled Trudeau violated the terms of the settlement with his book promoting "easy" weight-loss techniques such as prescription hormone therapy, colon hydrotherapy and a 500-calorie-a-day diet. He was ordered to pay nearly $38 million, an amount based on the number of books sold.

Trudeau, whose marketing business is based in Chicago, has repeatedly insisted that he is broke and cannot pay the fine.

Federal Trade Commission lawyers on Wednesday presented evidence to demonstrate that Trudeau recently spent thousands of dollars on haircuts, liquor, cigars and high-end meat products.

Gettleman ordered him to be locked up overnight on Wednesday and to meet with a court-ordered receiver on Thursday.

The Chicago Sun-Times reported the federal judge warned Trudeau on Thursday that he's on a "tight leash" and could be jailed again at his scheduled court appearance next week if he is not truthful about his financial assets.

Trudeau has battled federal regulators over his marketing of "cures" for AIDS, hair loss, memory loss and obesity.

(Reporting By Lisa Maria Garza; Editing by Sharon Bernstein and Stacey Joyce)

We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see
Comments (3)
ChrisSmith wrote:
I’ve talked to dozens of friends and associates who’ve used and applied the information in Kevin Trudeau’s Weight Loss Cure book, and they’ve been greatly satisfied with the results. Even Dr. Oz supports some of the same techniques and strategies that you’ll be introduced to if you read the book.

Even if there was a guy who published a book filled with all other things than the truth, shouldn’t the person who disliked the book take the responsibility for his own purchase? Especially when you get a 60 day money back guarantee! Why would the government even care about this sort of case, if they didn’t have some kind of ulterior motive? It makes no sense to prosecute anyone who are just exercising their First Amendment Rights of Free Speech; especially when there isn’t a lot of/any complaints at all.

If an individual, like Kevin Trudeau, helps a whole bunch of people in an ethical, moral and wonderful way, wouldn’t it seem fair that he walked free, and hopefully with some well-deserved pay for his diligent work and contribution?

It’s ridiculous to say anything else. It really is. Those who claim that he is misleading people has probably never read the book, or even opened it!

Maybe the reason that they sue him is for something else.. It would make a lot of sense how they wouldn’t enjoy to see another individual, just like Edward Snowden, keep helping people become independent in their thinking, exposing corporate and government corruption and realize some truths about the lies of the media and the pharmaceutical industry.

All I can stand for through my own experience and the experience of personal friends of mine is this:

Thank you so incredibly much, Kevin Trudeau! MY life has become BETTER BECAUSE of your intentions and actions. Be free like a bumblebee, and may the best of all flourish in your life!

With great love and appreciation from Norway :)

Sep 20, 2013 4:54pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
sugg08 wrote:
The training KT has offered in the form of Your Wish Is Your Command has been nothing short of spectacula. Before listening to it I wasn’t doing much. I was very lost and broke. Through the training KT has offered and the opportunities I’ve gotten since becoming a member of the global Information network I have been able to turn my life around financially and have given my life a brand new meaning and purpose that didn’t exist prior to KT and GIN.
My thoughts and energy go out to you Kevin; you have never let any of us who know the truth down. Everything will happen exactly as it should in the best possible outcome.

Sep 20, 2013 7:52pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
ozgood77 wrote:
KT doesn’t own GIN so no idea why the Government is trying sooo hard to go after an international club of success minded individuals who are working on improving our own lives as well as helping those who want to find ways of improving their lives. Where are all these complaints the prosecutors and FTC and FTD are talking about. Seems like a Lynch or Witch Hunt to me. I have only ever heard of good positive results from the people who actually did the diet properly. Personally KT and the many leaders he has introduced to me have had only positive impact in my life. Yes I have spent money close $9000 already in training and business trips to the US to meet these people face to face, but that’s really nothing, I spent $25,000 on my Pilot training courses, I have spent $5000 on Jay Abraham Courses, I have spent $8000 on Robert Kiyosaki Courses…all great, but the Information I have learned at the very entry level of GIN and from KT has already earned me over $17,000 in Profit, and continues to earn me profit. This is not MLM profit. I am talking about learning how to make Real money like as if I am a trader or broker. But that’s not all. Anyone who wants to see my evidence feel free to contact me. I got nothing to hide. You hear all these negative comments about KT, well let me show you real empirical evidence of me making money from Knowledge I got from KT and GIN.
Money isn’t everything. I was able to turn my marriage around which was literally on the verge of divorce and my Kids being taken away from me. Put a price on that. KT is a hero. I m not American so can’t say much for the first amendment but he is a hero for helping not only Americans but also for giving so many people all around the world a way to take responsibility for themselves (instead of always depending on someone else like the government or company to take care of them) Thank You Kevin Trudeau and all your friends who have made such great positive changes in my family’s life. It’s really wrong what the media and Disgruntled Greedy ExGIN members are doing to try to discredit you.

Sep 20, 2013 8:26pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

Full focus