Columnist faces charges

THE COURTS:

The federal government’s consumer watchdog has charged The Bug’s financial and investment adviser Morrie Bezzle with fraud for an allegedly misleading advertising campaign (main picture) for his own-brand toilet paper.

An ACCC spokesperson said charges had been filed against Mr Bezzle in the Federal Court under the Consumer Affairs Act.

Documents lodged with the court show that Morrison Edison Phar Lap Bezzle, age unknown, and residing at an address that the ACCC agreed to withhold because of pending unrelated matters in the Family Court, breached the Act by knowingly and repeatedly publishing advertisements likely to mislead consumers.

“Mr Bezzle’s advertisements wrongly claimed that all toilet paper has a use-by date and that such a date is visible to the naked eye on each roll,” the court document state.

“Mr Bezzle also falsely claimed that toilet paper was capable of transmitting coronavirus.

“The ACCC submits that these false representations were designed to mislead and create fear among consumers in the current climate where there is clearly a heightened  awareness of coronavirus which coincides with heightened consumer demand for toilet paper.

“We believe Mr Bezzle has taken advantage of these circumstances and has attempted to unfairly profit from them by misleading consumers into purchasing his own brand of toilet paper which ACCC tests show is no different to any other on the market.”

Mr Bezzle refused to comment when contacted. He said any statement on the matter would need to come from his business and legal adviser and he provided The Bug’s reporter with a Nigerian email address for a Mr C Skase of the Alan Bond Investment Trust.