Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- The Federal Trade Commission and Attorney General Pam Bondi have obtained a court order requiring the Alcoholism Cure Corporation and its owner pay restitution to consumers harmed by the company.
The company has been ordered to pay $730,000 to consumers who were harmed by the company's offer of a phony alcoholism cure program. The order also bans the company, which is based in Jacksonville, and its owner, Robert Douglas Krotzer, from marketing or selling any treatment or cure for alcoholism, drug addiction or any other human health-related problem.
Attorney General Pam Bondi said, "The fact that this company deceived consumers and threatened to reveal their personal information is abhorrent. I am grateful to the FTC for their partnership in stopping this company from exploiting consumers and providing refunds for those harmed by this company's action."
The FTC and the Florida Attorney General's Office filed the complaint against the company. The complaint alleged the company prescribed concoctions of dietary supplements with claims they could cure alcoholism.
Krotzer allegedly charged consumers approximately $350 for the services and supplements, falsely claiming customers could cancel at any time. However, when consumers tried to cancel their memberships, Krotzer would threaten to public reveal their alcoholism. Krotzer's company also operated under the names "Enjoy a Few" and "Guilt Free Drinking."
Krotzer, who was referred to as "Dr. Doug," advertised that their team of doctors would be able to cure alcoholism permanently thanks to their custom, low-cost treatment plans. Neither Krotzer nor any of his employees are actually doctors.
The court also ruled that the company's claims of having the best technology to permanently end alcohol abuse and that their supplements were scientifically proven to cure alcoholism were false and unsupported.
The defendants charged customers' accounts between $9,000 and $20,000, without authorization, for supposed owed fees.
Krotzer even disclosed some customers' alcohol dependence to companies, debt collectors and a Florida small claims court.
The court order prohibits the defendants from billing customers without authorization, using certain trade names and taking further collection actions against consumers. They also cannot misrepresent the cost or terms of any offer they make, misstate the professional qualifications of Krotzer or any employee and they cannot claim their company is a charity.
If you are a Florida consumer who has been affected by this scheme, you are asked to please file a complaint by calling the Attorney General's Fraud Hotline at 1-866-966-7226. You may also file a complaint online.
First Coast News