By Rebecca Aguilar
The Department of Justice (DOJ) has cracked down on Purity Health & Wellness Centers in Dallas that claimed “ozone therapy” was a treatment for COVID-19. Federal investigators say the business was offering unproven treatments for the deadly disease. The federal court issued a permanent injunction Friday against Purity Health and Jean Juanita Allen, one of the owners who the feds say, “fraudulently promoted so-called ozone therapy as a treatment for COVID-19.” The injunction stops the business from making such claims to clients.
“The Department of Justice will not stand by and permit the fraudulent promotion of supposed COVID-19 treatments that do no good and that could be harmful,” said Assistant Attorney General Jody Hunt of the Justice Department’s Civil Division. “We are working with law enforcement and agency partners to stop those who attempt to profit by selling useless products during this pandemic.”
Investigators say Allen was caught when she told a caller posing as a potential customer that although ozone could be dangerous, Purity’s treatment was safe for children, would sanitize anything, and would eradicate viral or bacterial infections. Court documents reveal that Allen claimed Purity’s ozone treatments could increase oxygen in the blood, making it impossible for the viruses to manifest.
She also claimed ozone therapy was 95% effective even for someone who had tested positive for COVID-19, and a team of doctors had recommended an ozone steam sauna for someone with coronavirus. The FBI found the company had posted the same claims on its Instagram account.
U.S. Attorney Erin Neal Cox for the Northern District of Texas said the defendant preyed on public fear, peddling bogus treatments that had absolutely no effect against COVID-19. The Department of Justice has established a page on its website where consumers can learn or alert the federal authorities about a business conducting a coronavirus scam or other illegal related activity.
Federal investigators, including the FBI, are on high alert for a business trying to profit off people looking for protection or a cure for COVID-19. Matthew DeSarno, FBI Dallas Special Agent in Charge, says “We will not allow anyone to illegally profit from exploiting the fear and anxiety related to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Attempts to contact Allen and Purity Health and Wellness Center in Dallas by phone, website, and Facebook page have gone unanswered. A post on their Facebook page on April 20 mentions ozone IVs cost $140, but there is no mention of COVID-19 treatment.
The DOJ has a hotline and email address where you can report a scam or attempted fraud involving coronavirus. You can report it by calling the Department of Justice National Center for Disaster Fraud Hotline at 866-720- 5721 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.