Algae Water, Hey?

     SALT LAKE CITY (CN) – Shareholders in an algae water company claim in court that they were flim-flammed into coughing up $160,000 by bogus promises the product would be pitched to Dr. Oz, Bill Gates and powerful Walgreens execs.
     Christopher Maggiore and Robert McLain sued Bradley Robinson and his company, Ceptazyme, in Federal Court.
     The plaintiffs, representing nonparty Health Enhancement Products, claim Robinson, on behalf of nonparty Zus Health, pitched them on an exclusive, worldwide license agreement for ProAlgaZyme, or PAZ, in 2010.
     ProAlgaZyme, produced from algae grown in distilled water, is touted as being able to reduce cholesterol.
     Health Enhancement Products and Zus Health signed a license agreement to sell the “nutritional products” on Sept. 2, 2010, according to the complaint.
     Still on the Internet this morning was a Dec. 13, 2010 announcement via Marketwire that Health Enhancement Products had received “its first purchase order” for ProAlgaZyme from Zus Health.
     On Sept. 16, 2010, the plaintiffs claim, Robinson asked them to invest in his new company, Ceptazyme.
     “Robinson told plaintiffs that he was being forced to assign the license agreement from Zus Health to a newly formed entity called Ceptazyme LLC,” the complaint states. “Robinson explained that Zus Health was dissolving and ceasing business operations because of a sexual harassment claim that an employee had made against it. Additionally, defendant Robinson told plaintiffs that he did not want other members of Zus Health involved in the HEPI [Health Enhancement Products] license agreement.”
     Robinson claimed that he’d formed Ceptazyme for the sole purpose of performing the license agreement, and that he was “experiencing difficulty capitalizing the company,” the plaintiffs say in the complaint.
     Maggiore and McLain say they invested $160,000 in Ceptazyme, based on Robinson’s claims of relationships with the Gates Foundation, high-level Walgreens executives and a producer of the Dr. Oz television show.
     Robinson told them that ProAlgaZyme would be distributed to “every nursing home in Utah,” thanks to his relationship with a geriatric doctor who “defendants misrepresented as the ‘largest nursing home doctor in Utah,'” according to the complaint.
     To top it off, the plaintiffs say, Robinson said multi-level marketing companies MonaVie and XanGo agreed to distribute the product.
     Alas! According to the complaint: “Defendants misrepresented that they had an existing relationship with a business partner of William Gates of the Microsoft Corporation, which individual allegedly worked at the Gates Foundation. According to defendant Robinson, his connection at the Gates Foundation owned a film company called RedJet Films. Defendants misrepresented that within a period of six months following the assignment of the license agreement, their connection, through his relationship with the Gates Foundation or RedJet films, would pay for and commence a controlled scientific research study to evaluate the use of the PAZ Product in patients with HIV-positive status. Defendants misrepresented that the funding for research would enable HEPI to vastly expand its production capabilities and scientifically establish the health benefits of the PAZ product. Defendants misrepresented that the scientific research and funding would profoundly increase defendant Ceptazyme’s sales and profits, as the sole exclusive licensee of the PAZ product.
     “Defendants misrepresented that they had existing relationships with high-level executives at Walgreens. Defendants told plaintiffs that within a period of three to six months following the assignment of the license agreement, defendant Ceptazyme would be selling the PAZ product at every Walgreens in the western United States.
     “Defendants misrepresented that they had existing relationships with the producer of the Dr. Oz television show, and that within a period of six months following the assignment of the license agreement, they would secure a television appearance on the Dr. Oz show to advertise, promote and market the PAZ product.”
     The Gates Foundation, Walgreens and The Dr. Oz Show are not parties to the lawsuit.
     Robinson promised the investment would be returned within six months, but it didn’t happen, the plaintiffs claim.
     “Defendants never formed any relationships with MonaVie, XanGo, the Gates Foundation, RedJet Films, or Walgreens. The PAZ product was never distributed, marketed, promoted or sold through such entities,” the complaint states.
     “Defendant Ceptazyme never satisfied the minimum purchases under the license agreement.
     “Defendant Ceptazyme never turned a profit and plaintiffs never realized any return on their $160,000 investment in defendant Ceptazyme.”
     The plaintiffs want their money back and punitive damages for conspiracy, fraudulent inducement, state and federal securities violations, unjust enrichment and negligent misrepresentation.
     They are represented by Dale Lambert with Christensen & Jensen.

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