Church Of Holy Bleach Drinking Family Indicted (Again) For Selling Bleach As COVID Cure
Hey! You know what is a bad idea? Drinking bleach. Bleach, while a wonderful product for disinfecting things and keeping your whites their whitest, is not meant to be a beverage, because it's toxic. It is not a cure for anything other than a wine stain on your blouse.
it is also a bad idea to sell bleach as a thing people can drink, while telling them the bleach will cure them of practically any disease (real or imaginary) on earth. In fact, that is the kind of idea you can go to prison for.
On Friday, a grand jury indicted Florida Man Mark Grenon -- leader of the Genesis II Church of Health and Healing, a "church" the indictment says pretty much only exists for the purpose of being able to sell bleach as a cure for things — and his three sons on charges of conspiracy to commit fraud and criminal contempt for continuing to sell their "Miracle Mineral Solution," despite a court order requiring them to stop.
This is the second time in a year the family has been indicted for selling "Miracle Mineral Solution," otherwise known as sodium chlorite (an industrial bleach used for stripping textiles) and water, as a cure for every health issue or disease on earth. They claim it cures "cancer, Alzheimer's, diabetes, autism, malaria, hepatitis, Parkinson's, herpes, HIV/AIDS, and other serious medical conditions." MMS is also a popular "cure" for not entirely real health conditions like Morgellons and "chronic lyme disease."
While the Grenons have been doing this for years, their insistence on marketing the bleach as a cure for COVID-19 led the government to crack down on their operations.
The Department of Justice also seems to not think it was very cute of them to create a church to get around the legal quagmire of selling people bleach to drink.
Via the press release from the Department of Justice:
The indictment [...] alleges that before marketing MMS as a cure for COVID-19, the Grenons marketed MMS as a miracle cure-all for dozens of other serious diseases and disorders, even though the FDA had not approved MMS for any use. The Grenons sold tens of thousands of bottles of MMS nationwide, including to consumers throughout South Florida, according to the allegations. They sold this dangerous product under the guise of Genesis II Church of Health and Healing ("Genesis"), an entity they are accused of creating to avoid government regulation of MMS and shield themselves from prosecution. According to charging documents, Genesis' own websites describe Genesis as a "non-religious church," and Defendant Mark Grenon, the co-founder of Genesis, has repeatedly acknowledged that Genesis "has nothing to do with religion," and that he founded Genesis to "legalize the use of MMS" and avoid "going [ ] to jail." The Genesis websites further stated that MMS could be acquired only through a "donation" to Genesis, but the donation amounts for MMS orders were set at specific dollar amounts, and were mandatory, such that the donation amounts were effectively just sales prices. The indictment alleges that the Grenons received more than $1 million from selling MMS.
That is a whole lot of money for snake oil.
The last time the Grenons were told they couldn't sell bleach as a cure, they threatened that they would get their guns and instigate another "Waco." And they do have a lot of guns, at least one of which they keep in a violin case like old-timey mobsters.
More from the DOJ press release:
[A]ccording to statements made in court by federal prosecutors in Miami, a search warrant was executed for Defendant Jonathan Grenon's house at the time of his arrest, and officers discovered that the Grenons were manufacturing MMS in a shed in Jonathan Grenon's backyard in Bradenton, Florida. Officers seized dozens of blue chemical drums containing nearly 10,000 pounds of sodium chlorite powder, thousands of bottles of MMS, and other items used in the manufacture and distribution of MMS. The government also recovered multiple loaded firearms, including one pump-action shotgun concealed in a custom-made violin case to disguise its appearance, according to prosecutors.
While Jonathan and Jordan Grenon have been detained since their arrest, Mark and Joseph Grenon are currently in Colombia. If convicted, they may all face life sentences in prison.
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Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse