Vemma critic Truth In Advertising has posted a transcript of the Sept. 15 battle in Arizona federal court between Vemma and the Federal Trade Commission over the preliminary injunction, asset freeze and appointment of a receiver. Vemma hopes to undo these things or at least to modify them in a way that would put the company back in business. (Link to transcript below.)
Truth In Advertising — TINA, for short — is a witness against Vemma and has been investigating the company since at least 2013. TINA says its mission is to empower consumers to protect themselves and one other from false advertising and deceptive marketing.
As a preliminary matter, the PP Blog observes that the transcript shatters the myth advanced by some Vemma supporters that the firm — alleged by the FTC last month to be a pyramid scheme — has been denied due process.
At least five attorneys appeared for Vemma. Two others appeared for Vemma CEO B.K. Boreyko, a charged FTC defendant. Still two others appeared for Tom Alkazin and his wife Bethany. (Tom is an alleged promoter charged by the FTC; Bethany is a relief defendant alleged by the agency to have profited from the scheme.)
Vemma cross-examined FTC witnesses and advanced witnesses of its own.
U.S. District Judge John J. Tuchi, a former federal prosecutor backed for the court by Arizona GOP Sen. John McCain and appointed to the bench by President Obama, McCain’s rival in the 2008 U.S. Presidential election, is hearing the Vemma case.
The transcript consists of 228 pages. The FTC claims that Vemma was a pyramid scheme through which Vemma told its own distributors they effectively could buy commissions. Vemma, meanwhile, accuses the FTC of gross overreach, orchestrating a sneak attack against a legitimate business and cherry-picking facts to make it appear as though the only appropriate way for the court to deal with the company is to kill it through the imposition of an asset freeze and the installation of a court-appointed receiver.
The judge is expected to issue a key order by 2 p.m. Arizona local time tomorrow.
Link to the transcript.