Enzyte Manufacturer Sentenced to 25 Years
Warshak, who was convicted in February on 93 counts, also was ordered to pay $93,000. U.S. District Judge S. Arthur Spiegel ordered the company and other defendants to forfeit more than $500 million. The figure was based on more than $100 million dollars in revenue generated by the company through deceptive advertising, manipulated credit card transactions and refusal to accept returns or make refunds.
In a statement, Warshak responded to the ruling:
"I do feel deep remorse and would like to apologize to any customer who ever had a bad experience with my company," he said. "I apologize to all the great people, the employees of Berkeley — they've given their heart and soul. I let them down."
The judge denied Warshak be allowed to remain free on bail, but allowed him 30 days to put his affairs in order.
In addition, Warshak’s 75-year old mother, Harriet, also was sentenced to two years in prison for related conspiracy charges. She has been allowed to remain free on bail, and because she has cancer, there is speculation that she will not serve time in prison due to the length of the appeals process.
Berkeley Premium Nutraceuticals manufactured a variety of lifestyle enhancement products, with male sexual enhancement formula Enzyte being its main product. Company advertising featured a character named “Smilin’ Bob” that touted the benefits of Enzyte.
Spiegel also ruled that the company would be allowed to continue to conduct business.
“This is a case about greed,” Spiegel reportedly said as he reviewed the case. “Steven Warshak preyed on perceived sexual inadequacies of customers.”