Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued a cease-and-desist notice to Phoenix-based YiLo Superstore Dispensary to stop YiLo from advertising products as a treatment or cure for COVID-19.
According to information received by the Attorney General’s Office, text messages have been circulating offering for sale a “Coronav Immunization Stabilizer Tincture,” in connection with YiLo, according to a release. There is currently no Food and Drug Administration-approved vaccine to immunize against, prevent, or cure COVID-19.
YiLo also maintained a webpage giving consumers instructions on how to use this “Coronav Tincture” if consumers “come down with a life threatening virus,” the release states. The webpage stated that “if you have [the coronavirus], it is suggested trying” YiLo’s product. The webpage was previously located at www.yilo.com/coronav. Since the Attorney General's Office notified YiLo of the cease and desist on Friday, April 3, the webpage has been taken down.
“Exploiting vulnerable patients’ health concerns by selling fake cures or treatments for a serious disease is wrong,” Mr. Brnovich stated. “We will not tolerate companies that attempt to deceive or exploit consumers during this public health crisis.”
The letter demands that YiLo cease and desist advertising that its products could have an effect on COVID-19 without any supporting scientific evidence. It alleges the text messages violate the Arizona Consumer Fraud Act by “fraudulently advertising at least some of its merchandise as having an effect on COVID-19 or on the immune system’s ability to resist or combat the disease” when there is insufficient scientific evidence to support that claim.
A copy of the cease-and-desist letter can be found here.
If you believe you have been the victim of consumer fraud, or would like to report a business engaging in consumer fraud, you can file a consumer complaint by visiting the Attorney General’s website. If you need a complaint form sent to you, you can contact the Attorney General’s Office in Phoenix at (602) 542-5763, in Tucson at (520) 628-6648, or outside the Phoenix and Tucson metro areas at (800) 352-8431.