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“Providing consumers with a false sense of security that these patches could somehow protect them from this virus is simply wrong,” Attorney General Dana Nessel said in a statement. “I will not tolerate deceptive and misleading business practices at any time, but especially not during this time of uncertainty surrounding Michigan’s battle with COVID-19.”
Frequency Apps Corp. and Biores Technologies Inc. allegedly claim the patch will “help aid the immune system to defend itself against exposure to the virus" and “can help lessen the effect of the virus if you already have [it]," the statement from Nessel's office said.
The attorney general called those claims "deceptive and misleading," during a time when people are looking for ways to protect themselves from the virus.
“I will not tolerate deceptive and misleading business practices at any time, but especially not during this time of uncertainty surrounding Michigan’s battle with COVID-19.”
As of Tuesday afternoon, Michigan had seen 1,791 cases of the virus and 24 deaths.
The companies have 10 days to agree not to sell or market the patches to customers in Michigan and provide contact information for everyone who purchased the $49.99 product.
The cease-and-desist letter was sent as COVID-19-related price-gouging complaints filed to the office neared 1,600.
"As of 7 a.m. today, the Attorney General’s office had received a total of 1,578 complaints of price-gouging related to COVID-19, which includes 649 complaints filed electronically through the office’s Consumer Protection website and 929 complaints taken by telephone," the release added.
The Consumer Protection tip line had an average increase of 200 calls per day between March 16-20, which occurred during extended hours of operation last week.
Consumers who have complaints about other products may call the Consumer Protection tip line at 877-765-8388.