Aaron Singerman, the co-founder of Blackstone Labs, was sentenced Thursday to 54 months in prison for conspiring to sell illegal products marketed as dietary supplements, including anabolic steroids, the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced.
Singerman received a lighter sentence than cited in prosecutors’ sentencing memorandum, 78 to 97 months in prison. Federal Judge William Dimitrouleas of the Southern District of Florida also ordered Singerman to forfeit $2.9 million, according to a news release from DOJ.
Citing their client’s charitable deeds, his devotion to his family and other factors—including his work building another sports supplement brand (RedCon1) “laser-focused on consumer safety and regulatory compliance”—Singerman’s lawyers in a sentencing memo argued against imposing a lengthy prison term.
Singerman admitted to leading a conspiracy to sell non-FDA-approved controlled substances through Blackstone labeled as dietary supplements, and he defrauded FDA as part of the scheme, DOJ said, citing court documents.
“Selling products labelled as dietary supplements that actually contain controlled substances and unapproved drugs is illegal and potentially dangerous,” Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian Boynton of DOJ’s Civil Division said in the news release. “The Department of Justice will work with its law enforcement partners to prosecute dietary supplement makers who ignore the law and disregard public safety for monetary gain.”
Singerman’s lawyers did not immediately respond to an email from Natural Products Insider.
Blackstone Labs co-founder Phillip (PJ) Braun was scheduled to be sentenced Thursday (Jan. 27) as well. However, his sentencing hearing was delayed that same day, court records show.
Braun and Singerman both pleaded guilty to counts 3 and 4 of a 14-count indictment, which charged them with introduction of unapproved new drugs into interstate commerce with intent to defraud and mislead, and conspiracy to distribute controlled substances.
Braun and several others linked to Blackstone Labs, including the company itself, are scheduled to be sentenced for their crimes in February.
Singerman departed Blackstone Labs in April 2016, and he went on to found RedCon1, which “quickly became the fastest growing sport supplement company in history,” according to the sentencing memo from his lawyers.
The company has nearly 200 employees, including more than 100 in South Florida, Singerman's attorneys said in the memo.
No charges or allegations of wrongdoing have been made against RedCon1, and the conduct in the Blackstone Labs prosecution occurred several years before the company’s formation, RedCon1 said in an email to Natural Products Insider.
“Legal and regulatory compliance is of the highest importance at RedCon1, and we place the health and safety of our consumers above all,” the company added.