A recent criminal case once again underscores that undisclosed chemical ingredients potentially lurking inside fraudulent dietary supplements promoted for sexual enhancement, weight loss, and bodybuilding remain a serious risk to the health and safety of American consumers. This time it was USPlabs LLC, a Dallas, Texas company that was indicted along with S.K. Laboratories Inc. and numerous associates on charges related to the unlawful sale of dietary supplements, according to a November 2015 U.S. Department of Justice press release.
Specifically, DOJ alleged that USPlabs conspired “to import ingredients from China using false certificates of analysis and false labeling and then lied about the source and nature of those ingredients after it put them in its products.” DOJ added, “[a]ccording to the indictment, USPlabs told some of its retailers and wholesalers that it used natural plant extracts in products called Jack3d and OxyElite Pro, when in fact it was using a synthetic stimulant manufactured in a Chinese chemical factory.” What makes this case so disturbing is that USPlabs allegedly continued to sell OxyElite Pro after it had been implicated in an outbreak of liver injuries and despite telling FDA it would cease distribution.
The presence of Chinese chemical companies which operate beyond the reach of FDA and which conspire with corrupt dietary supplement manufacturers and distributors in the U.S. to supply ingredients of unknown safety represents a deadly combination for American consumers and an impending perfect storm that is likely to trigger a future public health catastrophe. (See here, here, and here for previous posts on this topic.)