The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have announced the latest developments in civil and criminal actions taken against 117 dietary supplement manufacturers and distributors as the result of a yearlong investigation into allegedly tainted products. According to a November 17, 2015, DOJ press release, an 11-count indictment alleges that weight-loss and workout supplement manufacturer USPlabs LLC “engaged in a conspiracy to import ingredients from China using false certificates of analysis and false labeling and then lied about the source and nature of those ingredients.” The indictment claims the products in question were sold to retailers across the nation, with USPlabs asserting that it used natural plant extracts “when in fact it was using a synthetic stimulant manufactured in a Chinese chemical factory.”

“The joint agency effort is a testament to our commitment to protecting consumers from potentially unsafe dietary supplements and products falsely marketed as dietary supplements,” said FDA Deputy Commissioner for Global Regulatory Operations and Policy Howard Sklamberg. “The criminal charges against USPlabs should serve as notice to industry that if products are a threat to public health, the FDA will exercise its full authority under the law to bring justice.” See DOJ and FDA Press Releases, November 17, 2015.