Online Santa Ana PPE Marketer Targeted by FTC

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The Federal Trade Commission is suing a Santa Ana-based skin care company for allegedly making unfounded claims that a dietary supplement was effective against COVID-19 and failing to deliver on promises that it could quickly ship face masks, sanitizer and other personal protective equipment.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Los Angeles federal court against QYK Brands -- doing business as Glowyy and Dr. J's Natural.

The FTC alleges that Glowyy's operators made unfounded claims about the ability of a product called “Basic Immune IGG'' to treat or prevent the coronavirus. Specifically, in videos posted online, the company falsely claimed that the product could prevent transmission of COVID-19 and had been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for that purpose, according to the agency.

The lawsuit also alleges the company violated an FTC rule that requires businesses to notify consumers of shipping delays in a timely manner and give buyers the chance to cancel orders and receive prompt refunds.

“When online merchants lie about the availability of personal protective equipment or about the ability of products to prevent and treat COVID-19, it's a significant safety concern, and it's illegal,'' said Andrew Smith, director of the FTC's Bureau of Consumer Protection. “The FTC will take aggressive action to stop such troubling conduct.''

Also named in the complaint are QYK's chief executive officer, Rakesh Tammabattula, and his wife, Jacqueline Thao “Dr. J'' Nguyen, who is described as the chief operating officer of QYK and the founder and CEO of Dr. J's Natural.

The suit alleges that the company began advertising sanitizer, masks, face shields and other products online in March, falsely saying the items were in stock and would be shipped the same day they were ordered.

The FTC contends that for the next two months, the company made explicit promises about shipping dates and times, but consumer complaints show that QYK repeatedly failed to make good on those promises.

The FTC also alleges that the company would create USPS shipping labels shortly after an order was received, but would fail to actually give the product to the post office for shipping for weeks or months. QYK also failed to offer refunds to consumers or allow them to consent to the delay as required, the FTC contends.

Photo: Getty Images

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