Judge Won’t Free TV Pitchman Trudeau From Jail
CHICAGO (CBS) – TV pitchman Kevin Trudeau must stay in jail a bit longer, after again failing to convince a judge he’s done all he can to disclose assets to pay off a $37 million fine.
WBBM Newsradio’s Regine Schlesinger reports, dressed in an orange jail jumpsuit, and flanked by two federal marshals, Trudeau told U.S. District Judge Robert Gettlemen he isn’t hiding any assets that should be used to pay that fine.
He said the only remaining assets he hasn’t turned over are under the control of his wife and others, and he can’t do anything to get those assets released while he sits behind bars.
Gettleman wasn’t buying it, telling Trudeau, “You can’t put your assets in someone else’s name, then throw up your hands and say I don’t have those assets anymore.”
The judge said he’d be “very naïve” to be convinced Trudeau is broke, “and I’m not naïve.”
The judge ordered Trudeau jailed on Tuesday, and said he’ll stay there until he tells the court where he’s stashing his money.
Trudeau was ordered to pay a $37 million civil judgment five years ago, for defying a court-ordered ban on making false claims in his weight loss infomercials.
The Federal Trade Commission had sued Trudeau, claiming he falsely advertised his book as providing “easy” solutions to weight loss.
The FTC has said Trudeau is hiding assets in shell companies to avoid paying the fine.
Gettleman has said Trudeau will stay in jail until he’s truthful about his assets.
Trudeau also was jailed for one day last month, after the FTC found he’d hidden $20,000 in an Australian bank account; and spent thousands more to buy liquor, cigars, high-end meat, and expensive haircuts – in defiance of a court order to halt his lavish spending, and pay off his fine.
Gettleman scheduled another hearing in the case for Monday, and Trudeau will remain in custody at least until then.