LAW firm Slater & Gordon has today confirmed it is investigating the diet spray company SensaSlim on behalf of more than 70 franchisees throughout Australia.
Slater & Gordon class action lawyer Van Moulis said the firm had been contacted by franchisees who became concerned after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) froze the bank accounts of the SensaSlim franchisor last week.
ACCC made the move as it emerged the research used as the basis for the product's marketing appears to have been fabricated.
The website of the allegedly Geneva-based Intercontinental Research Institute, which claimed highly positive weight-loss results from a voluntary internet trial of more than 11,000 users of the spray, features photographs of people who it claims are its executives. But, as The Sydney Morning Herald reports, they are not.
The photographs used are actually of medical practitioners at the St Paul Lung Clinic in Minnesota in the United States, Fairfax reports. The Age newspaper approached SensaSlim to ask about the discrepancy, after which the names on the photos of the research company's site were changed.
Slater & Gordon is now looking after franchisees concerned about these reports.
“Now that the company SensaSlim and its diet product have been called into question by the ACCC, the franchisee operators are gravely concerned that they have been misled," he said.
"They had relied upon representations by SensaSlim that the product was as good as SensaSlim said it was and that SensaSlim had the medical research to back it up."
Moulis said the law firm was working with the ACCC, in support of the ACCC’s proceedings.
“If action is taken against SensaSlim then the franchisees may be able to seek compensation, particularly the refund of their purchase price and for a loss of future earnings.
“The franchisees who have contacted us are very concerned that they have been duped and are understandably very anxious to know the truth behind SensaSlim.”
Moulis said some of them franchisees who had contacted Slater & Gordon had purchased more than one ‘territory’. He said it was estimated that there were more than 110 SensaSlim franchised territories throughout Australia.
He said franchisees who had contacted Slater & Gordon so far were located mostly in New South Wales, Queensland and Victoria.