Last year as media-induced pandemic fear ripped through Australia, an Australian clothing company started advertising its “anti-virus activewear.”
In July 2020, Lorna Jane launched an advertising campaign for apparel covered in a “groundbreaking” spray called LJ Shield that the company claimed would eliminate and repel covid and other viruses, bacteria and fungus. “Cure for the Spread of COVID-19? Lorna Jane Thinks So,” one advertisement read. “With Lorna Jane Shield on our garments it meant that we were completely eliminating the possibility of spreading any deadly viruses,” another claimed. No scientific evidence was given to show Lorna Jane’s clothes did any of those things, government regulators said.
On Friday, a federal judge ordered the company to pay $3.7 million for violating the country’s consumer protection laws, calling the clothing maker’s conduct “exploitative, predatory and potentially dangerous.” “This was dreadful conduct as it involved making serious claims regarding public health when there was no basis for them,” said Rod Sims, chair of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, the regulatory agency that took the company to court.
Lorna Jane admitted it had made several false claims during the peak of the pandemic’s second wave in Australia but blamed a supplier for giving it bad information, the Guardian reported. The company won’t fight the court’s decision, according to BBC News.
ARTICLE: PAUL MURDOCH
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: COURIER MAIL
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