It’s been nearly two decades since various vendors of natural health products called “Growth Hormone Releasers” made wild and unsupported claims. They just flogged their products without any regard for clinical evidence or research. They all just sounded scientific. But, in fact none of their claims were true.
They were all just professional grifters aiming to take your money. In the U.S. they are still thriving because they know that the FDA hasn’t been able to challenge most of them in court.
Efforts in the U.S. to control their bogus ads have been futile. Their FTC (Federal Trade Commission) basically threw up their hands over false advertising of GHR-15 and also from many other companies. Scores of other companies set up multiple web sites selling their own versions of GHR over the last two decades.
The claims for nearly all of the GHR-type products were not just deceptive, they were clearly fraudulent. For the most part these others are all still on the market in the U.S. The one Canadian company was one of the earliest floggers of these products remains active in the U.S. operating out of a number of private mailboxes, usually located near border crossings.
In Canada, one particular product GHR-15 was first marketed in the early 2000s by Burlington, Ontario company named BIE Health Products. This company was founded by Richard Beemer who has admitted that he had no scientific training in sworn depositions.
They maintained a number of U.S. Internet locations including biehealth.com and biehealth.us.
Beemer fought back when Health Canada (HC) received complaints over many years about the false claims made by BIE in numerous publications and on their web sites. HC had asked the Canadian Border Services and other shipping agencies to block GHR-15 coming up from the U.S. to Canada for years.
In the Summer of 2005, Health Canada finally issued a public warning to consumers about GHR-15. Dozens of media outlets, newspapers, and health organizations repeated or linked to the HC warning. The Canadian government never criminally charged Mr. Beemer or his company.
Beemer was fed up with the HC-directed border seizures. So, he hired an agent to threaten legal actions against the Canadian government, media outlets, health organizations, and Dr. Terry Polevoy. The man chosen by Beemer to direct the threats was Trueman Tuck. He was at the front of many other campaigns to defend health quackery over the years.
Tuck was actually just a businessman who turned his career around by registering as a lobbiest. He was well-known in the Eastern Ontario city of Belleville. Trueman was an erstwhile politician who ran many times unsuccessfully for public office. He ran a local health food store with members of his family and had separate business as an unlicensed paralegal for many years.
As a result of his association with other natural food product vendors in Canada, he was hired by Richard Beemer. This resulted in the first multi-million dollar lawsuit for libel and defamation in the July 2005.
It was crystal clear to Dr. Polevoy, a physician from Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario that Tuck was way over his head. The illegal lawsuit lingered for over three years. It wasn’t until Mr. Tuck faced legal action himself for practicing law without a license, and he was fined over $20,000, that the “lawsuit” was turned over to an actual registered solicitor, Paul Starkman from the Toronto area.
Some of Dr. Polevoy’s original web sites and blogs featured his history with Richard Beemer, Trueman Tuck, and their entourage of others who supported a libertarian attitude towards the regulation of natural health products. Some of them had libeled and defamed Dr. Polevoy because of his activism against fraudulent products, devices and errant quacks.
Trump, on behalf of Richard Beemer sued dozens of media organizations, medical groups, and HC representatives. And, he also sued Dr. Terry Polevoy, MD from Kitchener-Waterloo who tracked and featured health quackery on his many web sites and blogs since 1997.
What you can expect from this blog:
We will attempt to profile major events in the BIE lawsuit here in Canada over the last 13 years. The case has still not been heard in a proper court of law.
Even though BIE was forced to hire a real lawyer, Paul Starkman, in 2008, little has changed in their attempt to drag out this ridiculous and frivolous case over the last 10 years. Their complaint is now asking for about $38 million in damages.
They have tied up the case at every level, creating a tangled maze of demands on Dr. Polevoy and the Federal government. Thousands of pages of evidence have been given to the plaintiff’s solicitor, and they have used every kind of delaying tactic and accused the defendants again and again of causing the problems.
We appeal to anyone who has ever bought or used any products like GHR-15 to contribute to the defence of our position. Let us know what they promised you and if they delivered on their claims. It would also be nice to hear from anyone in Canada and the U.S. who has filed an official complaint against any company that has marketed products like this.
I have left the comments pages open at the present time.
Thanks to all who care about consumer health fraud!