A family face life in prison after being accused of peddling industrial bleach as a cure for coronavirus, cancer, autism and other medical conditions.
Mark Grenon, 62, and his three sons Jonathan, 34, Jordan, 26, and Joseph, 32, have all been charged in relation to the fraudulent marketing and selling of the toxic product for human consumption.
They are reported to have made more than $1 million with their scheme, after selling thousands of bottles under Genesis II Church of Health and Healing – an entity they are said to have created.
The dad even reportedly took credit for then-US President Donald Trumptouting the ingestion of disinfectants in fighting Covid-19 this time last year.
The four defendants, from Bradenton, Florida, were also indicted with defying federal court orders in relation to the halting of distribution, the US Attorney’s Office said.
They allegedly threatened a judge that they would “pick up guns” and instigate “a Waco” should attempts be made to put in place court orders to stop them continuing their dealings, a press release said.
The Grenons are all charged each with one count of conspiracy to commit fraud and two of criminal contempt.
They are accused of manufacturing, promoting and selling ‘Miracle Mineral Solution’, which consisted of sodium chlorite and water.
When ingested, the concoction became chlorine dioxide, often used for bleaching textiles and paper.
The defendants said their product could treat, cure and prevent Covid-19, despite having no Federal Drug Administration approval, according to court documents.
Mark Grenon wrote a letter to Trump last year claiming chlorine dioxide is “a wonderful detox that kill 99% of the pathogens in the body”, reports the Guardian.
He added that it “can rid the body of Covid-19”, and just a few days later Trump went on TV suggesting disinfectants could potentially be used to treat the virus.
He told baffled medical experts disinfectant “knocks it out in a minute. One minute!”
He went on to say: “Is there a way we can do something, by an injection inside or almost a cleaning?
“Because you see it gets in the lungs and it does a tremendous number on the lungs, so it’d be interesting to check that.”
Last year the FDA warned people about consuming unapproved products to help with Covid.
The Grenons are even accused of creating the church to avoid government regulation of their product and to “shield themselves from prosecution”, the release adds.