The companies claimed the energy shots were superior to coffee and said doctors recommend them, but the judge ruled that the companies’ advertising was deceptive.
OLYMPIA — A King County judge has ordered the makers of 5-hour ENERGY to pay nearly $4.3 million in penalties and attorneys’ fees for violating the state Consumer Protection Act.
Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed a lawsuit against the companies in 2014 and on Tuesday, Judge Beth Andrus ruled that the companies’ advertising was deceptive.
The companies claimed the energy shots were superior to coffee and said doctors recommend them. They also said their decaffeinated formula provides energy, alertness and focus that would last hours.
Ferguson says the companies broke the law in pursuit of profit, and now they are paying for it.
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The judge ordered Living Essentials LLC and Innovation Ventures LLC to pay about $2.2 million in civil penalties and an additional $2.1 million in legal fees.