Big-Time Pill Spammer’s Operations Shut Down

Rhett Pardon
CHICAGO — The Federal Trade Commission, reacting to more than 57,000 complaints, shut down a spammer and froze his assets, using the Can-Spam Act to put a stop to his mass mailings.

Creaghan A. Harry of Boca Raton, Fla., is "responsible for what likely amounts to millions of illegal spam messages," the FTC said of its third court action under the 7-month-old federal anti-spam law.

The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago, accuses Harry of using open proxies and other fraudulent methods to hide his identity to bombard email users with pitches for human growth hormone products, such as Supreme Formula HGH and Youthful Vigor HGH.

The spammer's messages linked to a slew of Harry’s websites, which promised that his products stopped or reversed the aging process. A one-month supply was priced at $79.95, leading to the defrauding of "thousands of consumers of hundreds of thousands of dollars."

Regulators say the messages conned consumers into spending hundreds of thousands of dollars. Expert witnesses for the FTC determined the products have no medicinal value.

Last week, a federal court jurist granted the FTC a preliminary injunction. The order froze Harry's assets and prohibits him from marketing his human growth hormone products.

Harry appears on anti-spam organization Spamhaus' list of the world's top 200 spammers.

The FTC filed its first lawsuits under the Can-Spam Act in April. The first suit accuses four Detroit-area men of leading a spam operation that marketed diet patches in emails with fake addresses.

The second FTC case involves an Australian company, Global Web Promotions, which marketed human growth hormone products in emails that disguised their source. Both cases are pending.