Former President Of Fort Myers Dietary Supplement Company Sentenced To Prison For Misbranded Food
Fort Myers, Florida – U.S. District Judge Sheri Polster Chappell has sentenced Derek Vest (52, Fort Myers) to 18 months in federal prison for introducing misbranded food into interstate commerce. As part of his sentence, the Court also entered a money judgment in the amount of $2.5 million, the proceeds obtained as a result of the offense.
Vest pleaded guilty on March 29, 2017.
According to court documents, from at least April 16, 2013, through November 28, 2014, Vest was the President of Gentech Pharmaceutical, a dietary supplement sales, marketing, and distribution facility located in Fort Myers. In that capacity, he controlled and oversaw the manufacture, marketing, and sale of purported dietary supplements including, AddTabz, PhenTabz, and PhenTabz-Teen. Vest’s company marketed and sold these dietary supplements over the Internet, in stores, and at various kiosks.
AddTabz were marketed as mental focus and performance tablets. They were advertised as a safe alternative to Adderall, and as a designer non-prescription pharmacological alternative that claimed to improve memory, learning, and overall brain function instantly. PhenTabz and PhenTabz-Teen were advertised as weight loss tablets. All of these products were sold throughout the United States and overseas. In addition, Vest authorized the use of amphetamine derivative DMAA (1,3-Dimethylamine) in the manufacture of various Gentech Pharmaceutical products including, AddTabz, PhenTabz, and PhenTabz-Teen. However, he did not disclose the presence of DMAA on the product labeling for the tablets.
During this time period, Vest’s company sold more than 2 million tablets that had been misbranded and shipped to consumers.
This case was investigated by the Food and Drug Administration. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Yolande G. Viacava.