SPOKANE -- Thousands of consumers who purchased bogus medical supplies in Washington and 17 other states will benefit from a settlement announced today by Washington Attorney General Christine Gregoire.
The settlement, for $150,000, was reached with defendant Eric Glenn concerning Glenn's sale of magnetic mattress pads and "Chinese" mineral lamps.
The Attorney General's investigation of Glenn and his business, NW Global Network, Inc., also known as Global Health Solutions and Natural Wellness Network, indicated Glenn sold an estimated $6 million of the medical devices to over 7,000 consumers from August 2001 to December 2002.
Glenn sent free-dinner invitations to persons over 50 years old with more than $50,000 annual income. At the dinners salesmen conducted a high-pressure sales pitch to buy $1,000 magnetic mattress pads.
The salesmen claimed small magnets imbedded in the mattress pad would cure nearly anything from allergies to high-blood pressure to chronic pain. They claimed these magnets would align and thereby help blood flow due to iron found in blood.
The "Chinese" mineral lamps sold for about $700. They were said to heal anything from athlete's foot to heart disease, "by emitting far infrared rays." The Attorney General's Office found neither product held up to its advertised promises. Consumers were unfairly deceived as a result.
"This fraud took advantage of vulnerable people looking for relief from chronic and sometimes debilitating pain," said Gregoire.
Among other deceptive practices, Glenn used fake celebrity endorsements from people such as Anthony Hopkins and Dick Van Dyke.
The settlement provides for up to $100,000 restitution to be shared by qualifying consumers. Those who have not filed a complaint with the Attorney General's Office have until March 1, 2004 to be included in this settlement. Consumers can file on-line at http://www.wa.gov/ago or by calling 1-800-551-4636. They must provide details of their purchases from Glenn and his companies and copies of all paperwork such as invoices, receipts and cancelled checks.