Johnny was Sam Cohen’s client 15 years ago. The memory is alive and well. Johnny wrote to share his sad story. Below is our correspondence. I have left Johnny’s text as it arrived, without correcting any of the typos. Out of the blue, he sent this first email:
Great work with exposing this guy and great job with documenting everything on the website.
I visited Sam’s plush office housing 5 attractive office assistants back in early 2000 and paid around $4000 only to be given someone else’s medication which caused extreme itching and discomfort. I was then asked to try another magical Indian curry solution and the same results occurred. So being fed up and after consulting with my doctor I decided to stop there and ask for a refund which he didn’t want to offer so I had to take him to the fair trade tribunal to recover my money. I took the advice of the mediator who was probably more concerned about how many cases he could resolve on the spot and settled for a $2000 refund. I should have let it go to the judge who hopefully would have noticed Sam was illegally dispensing medication and notified relevant authorities and awarded a full refund.
Not sure how he can still remain open but any potential customer with access to Google can now hopefully come across your great resource. Hope the film is a success and will look foward to watching it.
Thank you for sharing your story.
May I publish your story on my site? If so, I could change your name if you wanted some anonymity. Also, if you have any photos, or scans of documents etc, that could be added to your story, that would be useful. Such as old bottles, contracts, letters etc. I could mask out your name and address, if you wished.
P.S. As to how he is still trading: that comes down to illegality. If someone loses their driving licence, there is nothing stopping them from hopping in a car and driving!
Yes I don’t mind you using my story on your site without my real name. If you have any other questions to further build the story- let me know. Unfortunately I have thrown all brochures, pictures, medical report from my doctor out. I also returned all his bottles and medication.
Let me know if I can be of further assistance, and if you can add me to the mailing list for the documentary release which would be great.
I then asked:
One more thing please Johnny, I’m wondering why you were looking on the Internet for information about Sam after so many years.
What were you looking for and why is he still on your mind?
Johnny elaborated thus:
In terms of me searching for him, I think he just came up as a random thought. So I just had the urge to Google him, see what he was up to and if he was still trading. Not because I would ever go back to him as a customer but I was just curious.
I went through 3 batches of solutions handed to me and each time they caused adverse reactions where I developed unsightly rashes on my forehead and extreme itchiness. My local GP was amazed at how someone who wasn’t a qualified doctor or pharmacist could directly dispense medicine particularly how other patients names were clearly written on the packaging being given to me. I don’t think I took the Finasteride after reading on-line that it could increase the risk prostate cancer which he never warned me about. My doctor was quite good in that she wrote a letter describing my ordeal- my symptoms which I was going to present in the tribunal.
At one point during our consultation he [Sam Cohen] offered me a job and asked if I wanted to be flown to Melbourne and other far away places to hold product seminars/ presentations- I politely declined.
Now to answer some of your earlier questions.
How he lied to me:
No noticeable hair regrowth for 1-2 months and when I asked for a refund, refund not fulfilled.
It was the Fair Trading tribunal I think- which is now NCAT (Consumer & Commercial Division). I was just a young boy back then looking back- early 20’s. I went alone as I don’t think I told any friends or family about it as it was embarrassing. I think I was trying to get him on the basis of money back guarantee or for illegally dispensing medications. He didn’t have any representation and was very confident in his dealings with the mediator. The mediator had an effect of pressuring me into settling earlier as he said that 8 out of 10 cases are thrown out so you may as well take the $2000 refund being offered. I’m pretty sure he received a bonus for every case he settled before reaching a magistrate.
Let me know if you have any other questions.
Dear Reader, Johnny is not the real name of this former IHRB client. His real name is on my files. I changed his name here to offer him the confidentiality he desired. As for Sam Cohen offering Johnny a job, that’s all too common. Sam Cohen has made that offer to a large number of clients. Sam always wanted to grow his business, and wanted mugs to go out there and do his dirty work — far and wide.