Discuss as:

FTC wins $478M judgment from infomercial marketers

WASHINGTON -- Federal regulators have won a $478 million court judgment against the infomercial marketers of three "get-rich-quick" schemes said to have caused losses for nearly all the million or so consumers who bought the programs.

The Federal Trade Commission announced Thursday that the judgment was awarded by a federal court in Los Angeles against companies and individuals who marketed the schemes, titled "John Beck's Free & Clear Real Estate System," "John Alexander's Real Estate Riches in 14 Days," and "Jeff Paul's Shortcuts to Internet Millions." The infomercials deceived consumers with phony claims of easy money, the FTC alleged in its case.

The agency said it was the largest judgment it had ever obtained in litigation.

Consumers paid $39.95 to buy a system, and additional personal coaching services cost up to $14,995.