Friday, March 18, 2011

Fraudulent NC Gluten Free Baker Update - Criminal Trial Begins March 28th

All Gluten Free and Celiac eyes will be on Raleigh very soon as the criminal trial against Paul Seelig, former owner/operator of Great Specialty Products, is scheduled to begin on March 28th, 2011.  If you are not familiar with the situation, please read the following posts for all the juicy details and history.  At a high level, the state of North Carolina has charged Mr. Seelig on at least 25 felony counts of Obtaining Property via False Pretenses arising from his fraudulent sales of fake Gluten Free baked goods to Raleigh area consumers in late 2009/early 2010.  Mr. Seelig has been charged with purchasing regular wheat baked goods and repackaging and reselling those goods as Gluten Free.  He has been jailed (in lieu of $1.5 million bail) on those charges since June 2010 while awaiting trial.

You all may know that the FDA missed the August 2008 deadline to finalize the FALCPA law as well as the 2010 deadline to enact the law which was proposed in 2004 and passed in 2006. The law states the following for Gluten labeling...
Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in consultation with appropriate experts and stakeholders, shall issue a proposed rule to define, and permit use of, the term ``gluten-free'' on the labeling of foods. Not later than 4 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall issue a final rule to define, and permit use of, the term ``gluten-free'' on the labeling of foods.
This case is important on a national level because it clearly highlights the void left by the indecision of the FDA to finalize Gluten Free labeling.  With no final ruling on Gluten Free labeling, the door is open to companies like Great Specialty Products to defraud and sicken GF consumers.  Hopefully, North Carolina shuts that door and sends a message nationally while we continue to wait for action by the FDA.  A big thanks to the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services for defending Gluten Free consumers.

Stay tuned for more details over the next few weeks.... in the meantime, here are some stores that came out in December 2010.


J Jay said...

The guy is on trial and has not been convicted (at least according to your information).

Why don't you show some decency and wait until we get the verdict? I'm not saying the guy is innocent but we don't know the full facts. He's claiming to be innocent and who are you to say he's not?

Zach said...

Actually J Jay, the trial ended on April 14th (some 3 months ago) so you are a little behind. He was convicted and sentenced to 9-11 years in jail. Read here for more information ->

As far as your showing decency comment goes, as a direct victim of Seelig, I fully understood all the details and facts of this case. It's Seelig who showed no decency, not me.

Post a Comment