Search OCA:
Get Local!

Find Local News, Events & Green Businesses on OCA's State Pages:

OCA News Sections

Organic Consumers Association

Tyranny in the USA: The True History of FDA Raids on Healers, Vitamin Shops and Supplement Companies

Here's a brief overview of some of the campaigns of terror the FDA has initiated against natural healers, nutritional supplement companies and other organizations. Many were conducted using armed agents wielding assault rifles and automatic weapons, dressed in body armor. All of them were intended to destroy natural medicine, thereby protecting the profits of drug companies and conventional medicine practitioners.

This is the true history of the FDA that the FDA doesn't want you to know!

(This timeline is excerpted from my book Natural Health Solutions and the Conspiracy to Keep You From Knowing About Them)

1987: The Life Extension Raids

The Life Extension Foundation (http://www.LEF.org) has long been targeted by the FDA. It is a non-profit organization that publishes information about the healing power of nutritional supplements and genuine anti-aging breakthroughs from the world of natural health.

On February 26, 1987, approximately 25 armed FDA agents and U.S. Marshals burst through the glass doors of the Ft. Lauderdale offices of the Life Extension Foundation with guns drawn. A second group of FDA agents simultaneously attacked the LEF warehouse, where they detained LEF founder William Faloon at gunpoint.

Employees were lined up against the wall and searched. Agents rifled through the personal belonging of the employees and confiscated many items. Over the next 12 hours, they seized thousands of items, including nutritional products, files, and documents, including 5,000 newsletters that were about to be mailed to subscribers. Computers and telephones were reportedly, ".ripped from the wall," and agents seized anything they could find regardless of whether such items were actually named in the search warrant. Later analysis revealed that 80 percent of the seized items were never named in the warrant.

Not surprisingly, the entire legal basis for the raid was fraudulent to begin with. The search warrant, issued by Magistrate Lurana S. Snow, was based on perjured testimony by FDA agent Martin Katz. But the intent to terrorize the Life Extension Foundation worked: Employees suffered nightmares and many were afraid to come to work.

Rather than giving in to the tyranny of the FDA, Bill Faloon and the Life Extension Foundation chose to fight for their First Amendment rights. As explained by Saul Kent of the Life Extension Foundation at www.LEF.org:

"Everyone we consulted, including attorneys who were FDA "experts", told us we had to submit to the FDA's authority to have any chance of surviving. We ignored all this advice and instead decided to wage all-out war against the FDA. We did this knowing that we would not only risk our livelihood, but our personal freedom as well . We were told again and again that the FDA had the unlimited resources of the federal government at its disposal, and that an organization with fewer than 5,000 members had no chance of winning an all-out war with them."

To further terrorize the Life Extension Foundation and its founders, the FDA, with the help of various corrupt law enforcement bodies, filed 56 criminal charges against Foundation officers Saul Kent and William Faloon. After an 11-year reign of terror in which the FDA spent millions of taxpayer dollars attempting to prosecute them, Kent and Faloon prevailed. In November, 1995, Federal Judge Daniel Hurley dismissed 55 of the 56 charges, and in February, 1996, the final charge was dismissed.

And thus ended the FDA's campaign of terror against the Life Extension Foundation. It was the first time in 88 years that the FDA had been forced to give up its prosecution efforts and throw in the towel.

As Saul Kent says, "The FDA's dismissal of the charges against me (and Bill Faloon) is an unprecedented victory against FDA tyranny that goes far beyond winning in court. The FDA's historic defeat is a victory for everyone who cherishes freedom in healthcare."

In 1994, the Life Extension Foundation established the FDA Holocaust Museum to document the decades-long reign of terror the FDA has perpetrated against the American people.

1990 - The El Cajon pet food store raid

In 1990, FDA agents raided the pet food store of Sissy Harrington-McGill, a 57-year-old pet lover who was guilty of the "crime" of claiming that vitamins would help keep pets healthy. Without a search warrant, FDA agents ransacked her store, confiscating products and literature.

She was later tried and convicted of violating the Health Claims Law, a law that did not exist at the time of the raid and was never passed by the U.S. Congress. Nonetheless, likely due to FDA pressure on the presiding judge, she was sentenced to 179 days in prison and fined $10,000 for daring to say that vitamins are good for puppy dogs!

1990 - The Highland Laboratories raid

In 1990, Ken Scott ran a vitamin business in Mt. Angel, Oregon, a small rural town. He was selling nutritional supplements containing coenzyme Q10, a vital nutrient for cellular energy that has received tremendous praise from the scientific community for boosting cardiovascular health, preventing congestive heart failure, improving blood pressure and cholesterol profiles, as well as many other benefits. To help educate customers about the healing power of CoQ10, he offered to send reprints of magazine and newspaper articles describing some of the scientific findings about the nutrient.

This public education effort, of course, would not be tolerated by the FDA Gestapo. So the FDA organized an armed raid comprised of nine FDA agents, 11 U.S. Marshals and eight Oregon state police. With guns drawn, they kicked in the doors to Ken Scott's business and conducted one of the most terror-driven "vitamin" raids in U.S. history.

For the next 11 hours, agents confiscated nearly everything they could find at Highland Laboratories. Ken Scott and his employees were threatened with violence if they tried to set foot in the office, and his daughter, who was located miles away, was illegally detained and held in "house arrest" for 12 hours.

The FDA, you see, would not tolerate Ken Scott mailing scientific literature or articles to his customers. So in order to comply with the FDA, Scott later hired an outside mailing service owned by his daughter to run the article mailing operations.

The FDA's response to that? They illegally raided the mailing service company and threatened to confiscate the checkbook and cash of its owner. Out of fear (terrorism works, you see?), that owner subsequently closed her business and refused to file charges against the FDA.

Ken Scott was ultimately forced to cut a deal with prosecutors, and eventually served five years on probation for his "crime" of telling the truth about CoQ10.

The message from the FDA to other vitamin companies couldn't be more clear: Don't you dare tell your customers the truth about vitamins, or we'll shut you down and prosecute you!

1990: The Century Clinic "chelation" raids

In Reno, Nev., 1990, the Century Clinic was raided by the FDA and Postal Service inspectors. Agents seized large quantities of items from the clinic, virtually wiping it out of computers and equipment, as well as patient records and files. No charges were filed.

After Century Clinic rebuilt and sued the FDA for the return of its property, the FDA raided it again and conducted a search of the persons and homes of the owners and employees. Patients at the clinic were reportedly interrogated and not allowed to leave without turning over their names and addresses. No charges were ever filed against the clinic or its owners.

1991: The Tijuana cancer clinic kidnapping

Jimmy Keller cured his own cancer through the use of natural medicine therapies. Encouraged by success with his own cancer, he pursued a career in natural medicine and later moved to Mexico and opened a clinic that could legally treat U.S. patients with the disease (treating cancer naturally is illegal in the United States, so the best practitioners are forced to open clinics in Mexico or other countries). The success of this clinic caught the eye of health authorities in the United States, and they decided to put a stop to it.

In March 1991, armed Mexican police officers, with no warrants or charges whatsoever, kidnapped Keller from the St. Jude Hospital and delivered him to U.S. Justice Department bounty hunters who, against his will, drove him across the border to the USA. There, the FBI arrested him and charged him with wire fraud (Keller had used the telephone to hold conversations with prospective patients). Keller was later convicted of wire fraud and sent to a North Dakota prison for two years. His kidnapping and arrest are blatantly illegal under international law.

1992 - Raid on Nature's Way

In 1992 in Utah; the FDA seized bulk primrose oil from Nature's Way, a manufacturer that offers some of the highest-quality supplements in the business. Nature's Way filed a lawsuit to get their product returned, but was forced to remove the natural Vitamin E from the formulation, as the FDA insisted that Vitamin E had not been approved as an additive for primrose oil.

1992 - The Tahoma Clinic FDA Raid

On May 6, 1992, FDA agents joined armed King County police officers in an armed raid against the clinic of Dr. Jonathan Wright, an M.D. and natural health practitioner. His crime? He was treating patients with injectable high-dose B vitamins -- a safe, natural treatment -- and in doing so was actually helping patients heal.

The armed agents smashed down the door, rushed into the clinic like a SWAT team with guns drawn, terrorizing the patients and shouting at them to put their hands in the air. Over the next fourteen hours, agents rifled through Dr. Wright's clinic, seizing patient records, computers, vitamin supplies, and various natural therapy products. The FDA illegally held on to confiscated items, including the computers needed to run his clinic, for three years.

But was Dr. Wright really so dangerous as to justify an armed raid? He's a graduate of Harvard and the University of Michigan Medical School. He's a book author, a prolific public speaker, and served as the nutrition editor of Prevention magazine for more than ten years. The purpose of the FDA raid was clearly not to arrest Dr. Wright, who was never charged. Rather, the purpose appears to be conducting a campaign of terror: sending a message to the alternative medicine community that anyone engaged in nutritional treatments could be raided and shut down, with no legal justification.

It was all part of the FDA's campaign against natural health treatments, a campaign that continues to this day.

1992: The Texas vitamin store raids

In 1992, the FDA prompted the Texas Department of Health (TDH) and the Texas Department of Food and Drug to conduct raids on more than 12 health food stores. Agents seized flaxseed oil, aloe vera, zinc supplements, vitamin C, and even Sleepytime Tea. One health food store owner was reportedly threatened by TDH with, "Don't talk to the press, or we'll come down on you twice as hard!"

None of the confiscated products were ever returned to the store owners, no charges were filed, and no reason for the raids was ever given. The raids were simply a campaign of terror designed to destroy the inventory and disrupt business operations of stores selling natural health products.

1993: The health food store raids

In 1993, the war against health freedom reached its peak in Texas, where combined forces of the FDA, DEA, IRS, U.S. Customs, and U.S. Postal Services conducted commando-style raids on nearly 40 different health food stores, vitamin companies, and natural health clinics from May through September. The homes of company owners and employees were also raided, and some raids were conducted with SWAT teams brandishing assault weapons and flak jackets.

In one home, a mother who was breast feeding her infant was reportedly "roughed up and handcuffed for 11 hours while FDA agents ransacked her home." Items seized in the raids included vitamins, minerals, herbs, and nutritional supplements. IRS officials also seized computers, automobiles, and bank accounts. The U.S. Postal Service illegally blocked the mail of some of the targeted companies, denying them the ability to conduct business or even organize a legal defense.

Targeted products included Dr. Kurt Donsbach's nutritional products and Dr. Hans Neiper's German-made health products.

The 1963 Church of Scientology raid

In the early 1960s, the FDA got word of something it didn't like: The Church of Scientology was helping its members overcome mental problems with the use of a simple biofeedback device called the E-meter. With the market for psychotropic drugs so consistently profitable, and with Scientology gaining momentum in helping millions of people overcome severe emotional and mental problems, this E-meter had to be taken out of play. and fast!

To do so, the FDA filed a "libel of information" with a U.S. District Court, after which Judge William B. Jones ordered a warrant authorizing the arrest of the E-meters. Yes, the meters themselves were to be arrested. The warrant also authorized the arrest of "an undetermined number of items of written, printed or graphic matter."

With the warrant issued, armed U.S. Marshals and FDA agents launched a military-style raid on the church. According to sworn affidavits of eyewitnesses, the agents ".burst into the church offices. and loudly demanded and threatened all in sight; observed absolutely no courtesies except for not actually shooting the guns they carried, and denied to the Church administrators any opportunity to arrange that students and Church members not be disturbed, upset or terrorized.

"Showing no legal warrant, the agents and . deputies pounded their way up stairways, bursting into confessional and pastoral counseling sessions, causing disruption and violently preventing the quiet pursuit of the normal practice of religious philosophy.

"They seized all the publications and all the confessional aids called E-meters they could find in desks, in ladies' handbags, in students' briefcases and in the session rooms.

". the agents removed from the church to the waiting vans some tens of thousands of copies of over twenty Church books, texts, recorded sermons; even the Church archives were sacked. The confiscated material was handled roughly, and when ministers of the Church asked that their property be handled more carefully, the 'deputies' from Baltimore gave only sneering illiteracies for answer."

In all, three tons of materials were seized. In clear violation of both the First and Fourth Amendments, the FDA had illegally used its powers to spread yet more fear and terror through the world -- this time, to raid a church.

All religions have healing tools

Of course, Scientology is not as mainstream as Christianity, Buddhism, or Catholicism, but since when did religions have to be popular to enjoy equal protection under the U.S. Constitution? Besides, various churches have always attributed special healing powers to their particular tools. Roman Catholic churches have Holy Water and other healing elements (Easter wafers, Saint Glaize Candles, Scapulars, and so on). Other religions use prayer clothes, prayer oils, and various pieces of string for which healing benefits are commonly prescribed. Nearly all churches recognize prayer as an effective form of healing. Yet the FDA chose to single out Scientology's E-meter machine, likely because it perceived the device as presenting a genuine threat to psychiatry's monopoly over mental health treatment.

The FDA, you see, believes it not only regulates foods, drugs, and cosmetics, but also religions. Only "mainstream" religious practices will be allowed, and any such religions that use alternative symbols, rituals, or scriptures will be prosecuted, regardless of what the Constitution says. The rule of law never interferes with the FDA's campaigns of terror.

The history of the U.S. government's persecution of the Church of Scientology is long and complex, and it is a sad demonstration of true religious intolerance right here in the United States. The First Amendment, which protects both Free Speech and Religion, offers no real protection against the criminals at the FDA, who have for decades attempted to suppress alternative philosophies that actually help people heal.

After nine years of protracted legal battles, and the expenditure of countless millions in taxpayer dollars that funded the prosecution efforts, the Church of Scientology achieved a victory in the courts, and the FDA was forced to return the E-meters. Yet, just to inflict a little more pain and punishment upon the Church, the court ordered the Church of Scientology to pay for all the warehousing costs of the confiscated items held over the previous nine years, plus all the legal fees of the government's prosecution efforts. The courts also ruled that all Scientology literature describing the E-meter must carry a warning message written by the FDA, and that the church must pay the salaries and travel expenses of FDA agents who would, from time to time, visit the church to ensure compliance with the courts. (Source: The Hidden Story of Scientology, Omar V. Garrison, page 143.)

In other words, the Church of Scientology was to be severely punished for daring to oppose the tyranny of the FDA. Just as a factory-working Jewish prisoner who talked back to his Nazi captors in 1942 would be beaten and shot, the FDA made sure that the Church of Scientology would pay a dear price for daring to question the authority of this all-powerful federal agency, an agency that could summon the aid of firearms-brandishing law enforcement officials at any time, for apparently any reason, regardless of its legality.

Other FDA raids

  * 1991, San Leandro, Calif.: A nutritional supplement company, NutriCology, is raided by 12 FDA agents. All FDA injunctions were eventually thrown out of court.

 * 1991, Texas: The anti-cancer clinic of Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski, a brilliant researcher from Poland, is raided by the FDA and the Texas Department of Health. Just before the raids, the National Cancer Institute had announced they would evaluate the pioneering work of Dr. Burzynski, which involved cancer treatment using antineoplastons. With the help of health freedom champions like Dr. Julian Whitaker, Dr. Burzynski fought FDA oppression and went on to save the lives of countless cancer patients, some of which are profiled on his clinic website today: www.CancerMed.com

 * 1992, San Diego, Calif.: The heads of three European vitamin companies, along with their U.S. marketing professional David Halpern, are arrested and charged with 198 counts of conspiracy, smuggling, and violation of the Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act for importing simple nutritional supplements that are freely available in Britain, Germany, and other European countries. The indictments reportedly carried combined prison terms of 990 years.

 And this report, by the way, doesn't even cover the FDA's terror-style tactics against a company called Lane Labs, which developed and marketed anti-cancer supplements that really worked.

As you can see from this report, it is quite clear that the FDA has the intention of destroying natural medicine using any means necessary, including terrorism tactics.

And who supports the FDA? Pharmaceutical companies, medical associations, doctors, medical journals, hospitals and numerous corrupt Congresspeople and Senators. By supporting the FDA, they condone the use of terrorism tactics against the American people and, ultimately, support the continued use of police state tactics against innocents.

You can learn more about the true history of the FDA and Big Pharma in my tell-all book, Natural Health Solutions and the Conspiracy to Keep You From Knowing About Them.