Trudeau Headed to Federal Prison19 Mar, 2014 By: Doug McPherson
CHICAGO – It appears infomercial viewers have seen the last of Kevin Trudeau – at least for a decade. That is unless he can find a way to broadcast from prison that they don’t want you to know about.
The controversial TV pitchman and author, who made millions telling folks how to get free money, lose weight and cure illnesses naturally was sentenced to 10 years on Monday for criminal contempt.
Trudeau, 51, violated a 2004 federal court order that prohibited him from making misleading infomercials and misrepresenting his weight-loss books. Despite the order, Trudeau aired the infomercials at least 32,000 times, prosecutors said.
In November 2013, a jury convicted Trudeau of criminal contempt.
Prosecutors used infomercials from 2006 and 2007 as evidence of Trudeau allegedly misrepresenting the contents of one of his weight-loss books. The U.S. attorney said those infomercials were not only untrue, but they violated the 2004 court order that prohibited the infomercials.
His weight-loss book, which once topped best-seller lists, was the focus of the criminal conviction and a related civil case brought by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), in which Trudeau was ordered to pay a $37 million judgment.
Trudeau said he couldn’t pay the civil judgment because he’s broke. But the FTC noted Trudeau spent lavishly in recent years, including $359 on two haircuts. Trudeau claimed not to know where $100,000 in gold bars that he bought had gone.
During sentencing U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman wasn’t at a loss for words for the convict, calling him “deceitful to the core.” He added, “Since the age of 25, [Trudeau] has attempted to cheat others for his own personal gain.”
Prosecutors weren’t any kinder: In a sentencing memo, they called Trudeau an “unrepentant, untiring, and uncontrollable huckster who has defrauded the unsuspecting for 30 years.”
Prosecutors added that they could think of no comparable case of someone cheating people so brazenly, and said Trudeau deserved a sentence of at least 10 years. Trudeau’s defense attorneys said he deserved no more than two years and that they will appeal the 10-year sentence.
Trudeau apologized to the court, claiming he is a changed man.