News and Press Releases

Managers of West Palm Beach Septic Tank Products Sentenced for Fraud

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 13, 2012

Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and Arthur A. Elkins, Jr., Inspector General, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency - Office of Inspector General (EPA-OIG), announced the sentencing of Scott Weiss, 54, Richard Chiat, 46, andMitchell Friedman, 52, both residents of Palm Beach County, Florida residents, on their earlier guilty pleas to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in violation of 18 U.S.C. ยง 371. U.S. District Judge Kenneth L. Ryskamp sentenced the defendants to one (1) year of probation, with 240 days of home confinement with electronic monitoring. In addition, the defendants were ordered to $5,322.80 in restitution.

According to documents filed with the court and statements made at the sentencing hearing, Weiss, Chiat, and Friedman, along with employees of FBK Products, LLC., knowingly participated in a scheme to fraudulently market and sell an unnecessary septic treatment product to customers throughout the United States. More specifically, from about March 12, 2009 through October 2010, Weiss, Friedman, and Chiat used the name FBK and Septic Remedy in sales pitches designed to fraudulently mislead customers throughout the United States into believing that the EPA, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), were affiliated with the Septic Remedy. Further, Weiss, Friedman, and Chiat, through their employees, misled customers into believing that Septic Remedy would eliminate the need to have their septic tank pumped; that government regulations had changed the components of toilet paper; and that the version of Septic Remedy being marketed by them was reformulated to work on the purported newly-created toilet paper.

Mr. Ferrer commended the efforts of EPA-OIG for their investigation of this case. This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Norman O. Hemming, III and Antonia Barnes.

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A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.

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