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Bodybuilding.com Gets Raided



Feds raid Meridian online fitness retailer Bodybuilding.com
FDA says Bodybuilding.com has illegally sold supplements with steroids

Investigators raided this warehouse as they searched for evidence that Bodybuilding.com had violated federal drug laws.

BODYBUILDING.COM'S CEO Ryan DeLuca, shown in 2006, is a 1996 Capital High School graduate.

Thursday's raid followed a two-year criminal investigation into the company and corporate officers, including founder Ryan DeLuca, by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, according to search warrants filed in U.S. District Court.

The searches were conducted at Bodybuilding.com's headquarters at 2026 S. Silverstone Way, Meridian, and its warehouse off Gowen Road in south Boise, after two warrants were signed by U.S. Magistrate Judge Candy W. Dale, said Wendy Olson, an assistant U.S. attorney in Boise.

DeLuca could not be reached for comment, but a spokeswoman said the company is cooperating fully in the investigation.

"We are not the manufacturers of the products in question and will continue to work with the FDA on this inquiry," said Amanda Cheslock, the spokeswoman.

"We have no further comment at this time."

An affidavit filed in U.S. District Court listed more than 60 products sold by the company that contained five controlled substances or designer steroids, including andro and madol, a designer steroid the FDA identified in a similar probe that prompted a July raid of American Cellular Labs in Pacifica, Calif.

Days after the raid at American Cellular Labs, the FDA issued a public health advisory, warning consumers to stop using body-building products touted as containing anabolic steroids or steroid-like substances, many of which are labeled as dietary supplements.

The agency said it had received reports that men between ages 22 and 55 who had used such products have suffered serious liver injury, stroke, kidney failure and pulmonary embolism (blockage of an artery in the lung).

Bodybuilding.com was founded about 10 years ago by DeLuca and his family.

By 2006, it was recognized as the world's largest body-building Web site. The site is a store to buy products and a place to get fitness information.

The company caught the attention of Liberty Media, a conglomerate that owns the QVC cable home-shopping network, the Atlanta Braves, Ticketmaster and DirecTV. Liberty paid more than $100 million for a controlling stake in January 2008.

"Bodybuilding.com is a fast-growing leader in fitness nutrition e-commerce and the authentic voice of the body-building community," said Michael Zeisser, Liberty Media's senior vice president, at the time. "We are pleased to welcome entrepreneurs of the caliber of Ryan DeLuca and his team into the Liberty family."

But the the FDA was already investigating Bodybuilding.com.

Between February 2008 and last August, Robert Blenkinsop, an FDA special agent based in Boise, made four purchases from the company, he said in an affidavit filed in support of the search warrant.

Of the 31 products he bought, 23 tested positive for one or more of five anabolic steroids: madol, tren, superdrol, androstenedione and turinabol, he said in the affidavit.

Blenkinsop also said there is probable cause that the products believed to contain the anabolic steroids are "falsely and misleadingly labeled as 'dietary supplements.'"

The products purchased from Bodybuilding.com that contain the anabolic steroids are considered new drugs by federal authorities, which means they are not generally recognized by scientific experts as "safe and effective for use under conditions prescribed, recommended or suggested in the labeling," Blenkinsop said.

He said he is not aware of any studies for the products purchased from Bodybuilding.com that contained any of the five steroids.

"Without such studies," he said, "it is not possible that experts could generally recognize these products as safe and effective for their labeled intended uses."

Blenkinsop also said there is reason to believe the drugs came from outside Idaho.

Blenkinsop cited a list of products for sale at Bodybuilding.com under the heading "Hardcore!"

He said he believes many of those products are "neither safe nor legal" and that by marketing them the company is "misleading, defrauding and endangering its customers."

This raid comes days before a hearing scheduled in the Senate to talk about the multibillion-dollar supplement industry.

Critics say it is grossly underregulated.

Defenders say the current FDA regulations are acceptable and that people selling steroids aren't really part of the supplement industry.


Kind of funny that the author's name is Bill Roberts...lol


Let's just hope nothing happens to the site. The last thing we need is those assholes overcrowding this forum.


Yeah, we have plenty of our own assholes crowding this forum.


lol when i first read it i was thinking. OH SHIT HERE WE GO.

I was getting my troll defences up and everything.


ALAS if they only allowed vulgar pictures here, I would have the perfect response.


That's a shame.


I wonder what supps had all these naughty drugs in them. Must be that damn creatine. You know its dangerous.


Yeah, didn't some highschool football player die from it recently? I read about it in the newspaper.


I also heard from one of the brosephs that whey is bad for me aswell.


I saw that too!

I know we like to hate on BB.com, but this can't be a good thing.


I always thought they would get raided.


It looks like Lompoc is gonna get a little more crowded.


...for all of us. One step closer to government controlled supplements that will make it impossible for most people to afford and limit diversity.


Now, now. Isn't it the job of government to control our lives and prevent us from thinking for ourselves? Out of shape uneducated people are MUCH easier to bend to your will...


Dunno your PM's are working, but I sent you a PM. Thanks.


Damn, i thought the damn govt hit rock bottom when they banned ephedra and pro hormones. They just hit a new all time low wow incredible, no wonder so many countries hate us. We have too many overweight out of shape stupid people running our country.


I really wonder too

Turinabol, for example, is some very good designer shit from overseas that's been around for a few years. I want to know what products had/have? this shit in them. Damn me for never buying from BB.com lol


I don't know. I don't think this is inherently bad. Anabolic steroids should not be marketed as dietary supplements. I can easily see this going too far and resulting it too much regulation but too many people get fucked up because they think they are taking a benign supplement like creatine. Some people do in fact need to be protected from themselves when it comes to OTC AAS.

A bigger problem to me is that supp companies are willing to take the legal risk to sell people AAS but wont take the risk to sell the SERM's needed for PCT.


I read that they shut down the AAS forum over there because of this.