Pete Evans — the man behind the neo-Nazi meme, COVID conspiracy theories and a potential Senate run — is now being fined by the Therapeutic Goods Association (TGA), part of Australia’s Department of Health.
What for this time? According to The Guardian, the former celebrity chef “unlawfully advertised his ‘BioCharger’ device, static magnet products and oral medicines.” In his promotion of these products, he claimed they were miracle cures for ailments, which includes COVID — even though he previously claimed on a podcast that the pandemic was a hoax, and not be taken seriously (make it make sense).
On Tuesday, May 25, he was hit with a $79,920 fine for breaching advertising requirements. This follows a $25,200 fine he received last year, in April 2020, also by the TGA, for promoting the aforementioned BioCharger on a Facebook live stream.
This time, he “allegedly” spruiked the BioCharger and two oral medicines, static magnet products, and hyperbaric chambers for oxygen therapy. The latter involves breathing pure oxygen in a pressurised environment. In some instances, he implied that these products were endorsed by health professionals (they weren’t).
Evans has been ordered to remove the posts and to stop advertising unapproved products and therapies, in addition to the fine.
In Australia, under law, all therapeutic goods — like medicines and medical devices — must be entered into the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods. They cannot be advertised until included.
A statement from the TGA, which was released Tuesday, May 25, said: “Due to the repeated nature of the alleged advertising breaches, the TGA has also issued a directions notice to Mr Evans and his company, to cease advertising therapeutic goods not entered in the ARTG and to discontinue making various claims about therapeutic products.”
This is not the first time the former My Kitchen Rules judge has found himself in hot water. He was booted from Facebook and Instagram, permanently, for repeatedly sharing COVID misinformation.