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Sandra Bullock: conmen are using my name and picture to flog rip-off "miracle" weight loss pill

Mirror logo Mirror 22/02/2018 Andrew Penman

Hollywood star Sandra Bullock is furious after her name has been hijacked by conmen to push supposed weight-loss remedies.

Numerous websites are using made-up quotes that claim she uses a range of pills that boast of miraculous results.

The pills are also said to have won Dragons' Den here in the UK, and its American equivalent, Shark Tank.

“It was the most watched episode in Dragons’ Den history when sisters Anna and Samantha Martin won over the Dragons’ Den panel,” gushes a website for supposed fat-burning weight loss pills costing just £4.95.

“Never before had the judging panel unanimously decided to each invest over a million dollars into a potential company.”

Which raises an obvious question: why would the Dragons invest dollars and not pounds?

Still, the site goes on to claim that a bunch of Hollywood celebrities endorse the product, TrimGenix Garcinia.

“I have a hectic schedule and I don’t have a lot of time to devote to workout routines,” the website quotes actress Sandra Bullock as saying.

“That’s why I love TrimGenix Garcinia! Taking just one per day helps me stay toned and feeling healthy and energetic.”

a screenshot of a cell phone © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc

The pills are made from a tropical fruit, garcinia cambogia, and besides burning fat they supposedly aid sleep and increase energy.

I’ve no idea if the health claims are true, but I can confidently say that the celebrity endorsements are fake.

“This site is using Sandra Bullock’s name and image without her giving permission,” her spokeswoman said.

“She is not associated in any capacity with this product nor has she ever used it.”

In the States, there are websites claiming TrimGenix won Shark Tank: “$4.95 weight loss pill that naturally burns fat gets biggest deal in Shark Tank history.”

a screenshot of a person © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc

So, did it win Dragons’ Den or Shark Tank? The answer is neither.

The pictures of Anna and Samantha Martin really show two sisters called Shelly Hyde and Kara Haught, who went on Shark Tank to promote a swimwear range.

Their pictures have been used ever since by conmen to promote junk that is nothing to do with them.

“We would love to get them to stop, not sure how though,” they said. “It’s so frustrating.”

Last year, I told how the same pictures were used to flog a skin cream called, among other names, Total Age Repair.

a screenshot of a cell phone © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc

The blurb was identical: “Never before had the judging panel ­unanimously decided to each invest over a million dollars into a potential company”.

The only difference is that back then the sisters were given the names Anna and Samantha Williams, rather than Martin.

a close up of Sandra Annette Bullocks face © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc

The skin cream version of the scam is still active and one of the names it now uses is Le Baleux Moisturiser.

This uses the same picture of the sisters and another fabricated endorsement from Sandra Bullock.

“I have a hectic schedule and I don’t have a lot of time to devote to beauty routines,” she’s quoted.

“That’s why I love Le Baleux Moisturiser! Just a few minutes every night keeps my skin beautiful and wrinkle free.”

And it's not just Le Baleux, Sandra Bullock's name is being used without permission for load of similar old beauty and diet baleux, just look at these:

a screenshot of a cell phone © Provided by Trinity Mirror Plc

If half these claims were true the actress would be spending so much of her life popping weight-loss pills and smearing cream over her face she'd never have any time for filming.

These products typically use pressure-selling to push free samples. This Tuesday, one garcinia site read: “Free samples are limited. Expires on Tuesday, February 20, 2018.”

What you won’t know unless you find the small print is that you’ll be sent more of the stuff every month, along with a bill.

“I applied for a free trial of Total Age Repair which I received a month or so ago,” one reader has just told me.

“Today I’ve had another jar and a fee of £89.95.”

She received a £44.97 refund after complaining, but has since had another £89.95 deduction from her account without even receiving another jar – which means that so far the “free trial” has cost almost £135.

The curse of the online free-trial trap: is it finally being dealt with?

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