a. Respondent Magnetic Therapeutic Technologies, Inc. ("MTT") is a Texas corporation with its principal office or place of business at 1915 Peters Road, Suite 106, Irving, Texas 75061.
b. Respondent Jim B. Richardson, is the majority shareholder, President, Treasurer, and Secretary of the corporate respondent. He formulates, directs, and controls the acts and practices of the corporate respondent, including the acts and practices alleged in this complaint. His principal office or place of business is the same as that of the corporate respondent.
Respondents have promoted, offered for sale, sold, and distributed to the public magnetic therapy products. Therapeutic magnets are "devices" within the meaning of Sections 12 and 15 of the Federal Trade Commission Act.
The acts and practices of respondents alleged in this complaint have been in or affecting commerce, as "commerce" is defined in Section 4 of the Federal Trade Commission Act.
Respondents have disseminated or have caused to be disseminated advertisements or promotional materials for magnetic therapy products, including but not necessarily limited to the attached Exhibits A through G. These advertisements and promotional materials contain the following statements:
A. APPLICATIONS OF BIOMAGNETISM
* * * In the treatment of chronic conditions such as some forms of arthritis, degenerative joint conditions, diabetes ulcers and cancer, magnetic field therapy has shown dramatic results in aiding the reduction or reversal of the condition.
Some researchers, such as Nordenstrom and Wollin, have reported using super-magnet and electrical therapies to successfully treat lung and breast cancers.
[Exhibit A, MTT00030][Consumer Brochure]
B. SUMMARY OF BENEFICIAL INFLUENCE OF MAGNETS.
The beneficial influence of magnets may be summed up as follows:
2. Movement of haemoglobin [sic] in blood vessels is accelerated while calcium and cholesterol deposits in blood are decreased. Even the other unwanted materials adhered to the inner side of blood vessels, which provoke high blood pressure, are decreased and made to vanish. The blood is cleansed and circulation is increased. The activity of the heart eases and fatigue and pain disappear.
3. Functions of autonomic nerves are normalized so that the internal organs controlled by them regain their proper function.
[Exhibit B, at MTT00026][Consumer Brochure]
C. WHY SHOULD YOU HAVE a MAGNETICo SLEEP PAD??
MAGNETICo SLEEP PAD OWNERS TELL BENEFITS...
- a variety of fringe benefits are reported by delighted customers, such as:
- Increased - Circulation/Oxygenation
- Resistance to Disease
- Bone Density
- Lowered - Blood Pressure Other - . . .
- Multiple Sclerosis
[Exhibit C, at MTT00051][Consumer Brochure]
* * * 7. How long will it be before I can feel the benefits of the MagnetiCo Sleep Pad?
Because every person is different, it is impossible to predict when you will feel a difference. Some lucky people feel benefits the first night, others it may take 6 months. The most common time is 1-2 months. The important thing to remember is that some benefits, such as increased immunity, increased oxygen saturation and lowered blood pressure, may be taking place even though you can't feel them.
[Exhibit C, at MTT00053][Consumer Brochure]
Sleep Pad Success Stories
(Excerpts from Testimonial Letters on File)
(2 months on Sleep Pad)
". . . For months I was walking the floor at night with tearful, intense pain, resorting to Tylenol #3 every 3 hours. I have not taken painkillers since ... and I sleep like a baby! . . . I do not hesitate to encourage anyone to put this to the test!!!" Leola Christensen
Resident, Canada & California.
(6 months on Sleep Pad)
" . . . In 1980, I was diagnosed with MS . . . loss of balance, poor coordination, constant muscle spasms, fatigue and limited mobility are daily symptoms I have learned to live with. I have slept on the magnetic pad now for six months . . . [W]hat I have found to be the most beneficial is that it seems to allow my body to 'bounce back' at a more rapid rate than previous . . . It has also assisted in less frequent muscle spasms . . . It is not a cure for me but is of great assistance to me in allowing me to live a(n) . . . active lifestyle with additional energy. I consciously have not changed any aspect of my daily living habits to give it a fair evaluation and now can recommend it to others . . ."
Arni Skoretz - Alberta Social Services Professional RED DEER, AB.
(12 months on Sleep Pad)
"In January '92, I tested HIV Positive. . . . After you telling the report of improved T-cell count in mice placed in an increased magnetic field, I decided it was definitely worthwhile for me to try one of your MagnetiCo Sleep Pads. I am pleased to report that I have had no drop in T-Cell count since, although it did hold at the same level for a few months, it is now up to 638, which is a substantial increase. . . ."
Name withheld, Age 37
Los Angeles, CA.
EXTREME DIABETIC COMPLICATIONS
SLEEP DISORDER (8 months on Sleep Pad)
"HEALTH SUMMARY: Val Laugton
a. Diabetic neuropathy (nerve death) - causing excruciating pain in extremities (1 -3 bouts daily, lasting from 45 minutes to two hours).
IMPROVEMENTS SINCE SLEEPING ON PAD:
a. The nerve spasms took 5-6 months to improve to a marked amount . . . now they are reduced by 80%-90%, with no occurrences at all for 4 to 5 days at a time.
Dave & Val Laugton, Age mid-40's
[Exhibit C, at MTT00055-00058][Consumer Brochure]
(6 weeks on Sleep Pad)
"I am 72 years old and have had five heart attacks . . . tried all that modern medicine had to offer, but was left a virtual invalid, unable to do the smallest task. In just six weeks on the MagnetiCo Sleep Pad, my color is greatly improved, blood pressure down ten points, and energy levels up enough that I can even work some. Best Purchase I have ever made!"
Joe Subich, Retired
[Exhibit D, MTT000153][Internet Ad]
E. MagnetiCo Survey Results (1993) . . .
95% of ARTHRITICS received at least 25% PAIN RELIEF
75% of ARTHRITICS received at least 50% PAIN RELIEF
[Exhibit E, at MTT00049][Consumer Brochure]
F. MAGNETIC THERAPY
Here's an economical alternative to pain killers and costly traditional drug therapy. . . .
[Exhibit F, at MTT000164][Reader's Digest Catalog]
G. RELIEF FROM PAIN!
Do you suffer from PAIN, inflammation of the joints, nerves or tendons? Do you lie awake at night rubbing the parts of your body that ache and refuse to react to strong medicines.
MANY EXPERIENCE RELIEF WITHIN 24 HOURS
. . .. Magnetotherapy Products have hundreds of written testimonials stating that the person experienced RELIEF from PAIN and DISCOMFORT within just a few hours. Please remember, the MAGNETIC SUPPORTS are not a cure; neither are aspirin or other pain relief products. M+ flexible magnets can be an alternative to the high cost of doctor's visits and expensive prescriptions.
LET'S HEAR FROM SOME SATISFIED USERS OF THE MAGNETIC SUPPORT PRODUCTS
"I have arthritis in my right hand and severe swelling along with the nerve damage in my carpal tunnel. Due to intense pain, I had to quit golf. After using the magnetized wrist supports, I was able to swing a golf club again with confidence. My wife suffered from chronic back pain and back spasms. She was surprised at the relief she had after such a short time. . . . "
Bum Phillips & Debbie former Head Coach Houston Oilers and New Orleans Saints
THE GREATEST SURPRISE IS THE LOW COST
The average person suffering from pain has visited the doctor numerous times, spending $35-$50 and more for each visit. This is not counting the hundreds of dollars spent for prescription medicines. One lady writes she has been going to the doctor for over ten years and he was treating her for arthritic pain ... the cost was into hundreds of dollars. It still didn't satisfy the patient, as she still complained of pain. Her problem was arthritis in the knees and ankles. When she found out that the cost of a knee support was a one-time purchase price of $59.95 plus the state sales tax, all she could do was say . . . "Give me one now, she exclaimed" [sic]. The product was shipped UPS and she was wearing it three days later
[Exhibit G, MTT000215-000216][Price List]