Skip to main content

Television pitchman Kevin Trudeau is headed to prison

By Leslie Holland, CNN
updated 2:57 PM EDT, Tue March 18, 2014
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Kevin Trudeau was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison on Monday
  • The TV pitchman and author was convicted by a jury in 2013
  • Trudeau was found guilty of misrepresenting his weight-loss books
  • Prosecutors called Trudeau an "uncontrollable huckster"

(CNN) -- Kevin Trudeau, the television pitchman and author who amassed a fortune telling consumers his secrets about how to get free money, how to lose weight and how to cure a number of illnesses the natural way, is headed to federal prison.

Trudeau, 51, was sentenced to 10 years on Monday for criminal contempt for violating a 2004 federal court order that prohibited him from making misleading infomercials and misrepresenting his weight-loss books.

During Monday's sentencing hearing he also got a tongue-lashing from U.S. District Judge Ronald Guzman, according to the U.S. attorney's office in Chicago.

"Since the age of 25, (Trudeau) has attempted to cheat others for his own personal gain," Guzman said.

In a sentencing memo, prosecutors called Trudeau an "unrepentant, untiring, and uncontrollable huckster who has defrauded the unsuspecting for 30 years."

Trudeau was convicted of criminal contempt by a jury in November 2013 and has been in federal custody since his conviction.

Evidence was presented at his trial that Trudeau appeared in three infomercials in 2006 and 2007, and in those infomercials he misrepresented the contents of one of his weight-loss books.

The U.S. attorney said those infomercials were not only untrue, but they violated the 2004 court order that prohibited the infomercials.

According to his book covers, several of his books have been number one on the New York Times bestseller list.

Trudeau's defense attorney, Tom Kirsch, told CNN on Monday night that his client intends to file a notice of appeal in the case.

2010: Trudeau in contempt of court

CNN's Gregory Wallace contributed to this report

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
updated 7:59 PM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson says he was just doing his "job right" when he shot and killed black teenager Michael Brown.
updated 8:18 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
The interior of the Formosa Boulevard Mass Rapid Transit Station in Kaohsiung, in southern Taiwan.
Stunning stations where your first priority won't be finding the nearest exit.
updated 6:18 PM EST, Tue November 25, 2014
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says women's "nature is different," sparking fury.
updated 5:43 AM EST, Mon November 24, 2014
A 30-year-old woman has been charged with attempting to kill a baby police say spent five days down a drain before being discovered by cyclists.
updated 8:21 PM EST, Thu November 20, 2014
If it wasn't for a comic's skit, Bill Cosby would still be America's favorite father, says expert.
updated 7:51 PM EST, Sun November 23, 2014
Where do hip young things hang out in Taiwan?
updated 10:50 AM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
Obama orders the most sweeping overhaul of U.S. immigration in decades, prioritizing the deportation of "felons, not families."
updated 4:06 PM EST, Tue November 18, 2014
Fighters loyal to ISIS are now in control of Derna, a city on Libya's Mediterranean coast.
updated 6:19 PM EST, Fri November 21, 2014
China and likely other countries have the capacity to shut down the U.S. power grid, says the NSA.
updated 2:45 PM EST, Wed November 19, 2014
The founder of a U.S. nonprofit that works with returning soldiers is named CNN's Hero of the Year.
updated 10:57 AM EST, Wed November 26, 2014
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT