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Deflating news: San Diego convenience stores sued over supplements

You might have heard the hypnotic, synth-pop rhythms of the 1980s hit, “Tainted Love.” The duo that helped shape the sound of the decade was Soft Cell. Both the name of the band and their long-ago hit are brought to mind by a recent San Diego Union-Tribune headline: “Lawsuit claims San Diego stores sell tainted love pills.”

The so-called love pills are illegal and dangerous, it is stated in the business lawsuit filed against dozens of area convenience stores. The legal action was filed by Outlaw Laboratory, a Texas maker of “male enhancement” products. Outlaw claims it has been harmed by illegal competition; its suit targets 51 stores in San Diego County.

Outlaw claims in its suit that the products being sold contain Viagra and Cialis – substances that can be purchased only with prescriptions – over the counters of the convenience stores. Though the products have suggestive names sure to provoke laughter in some – Rhino 69, New Stiff Nights Platinum 19K and Black Stallion 35000 – they are apparently selling well enough to get attention from a relatively distant competitor.

The reason the products are effective, says the lawsuit filed in San Diego Superior Court, is that they contain the ingredients of the erectile dysfunction drugs.

The suit was filed by a California law firm that has threatened more than 300 7-Eleven franchises nationwide with litigation.

Store owners quoted in a newspaper article said they had no way of knowing what the products’ ingredients might be. One owner compared the threat of legal action to a hold-up.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it has in the past issued extensive warnings about these types of “supplements.”

Business owners know they have to be prepared for the possibility of litigation that can come from a variety of directions. A business law firm can help you protect your assets and interests.