Complaint against 'misleading' advertisement by anti-5G supplement company linked to Jami-Lee Ross upheld by watchdog

Jami-Lee Ross.
Jami-Lee Ross. Photo credit: File

A so-called anti-5G supplement business linked to former MP Jami-Lee Ross has been told not to use a "misleading" advertisement claiming the product will "restore healthy cells from 5G radiation".

The advertisement, published in the conspiracy magazine The Real News - linked to Ross' former political party Advance NZ, said: "EMF and 5G nutritional solution!

"Do you want? Boundless ENERGY, mental CLARITY, DEEP Refreshing Sleep, STRONG Immune system, LONGER Life. You NEED Praesidium. 

"Shields and Restores Healthy Cells from 5G Radiation and EMF's, Radiotherapy, pesticides and Cleaners, Emotional Stress."

The World Health Organization has said no research links exposure to wireless technology with negative health effects. 

Distributed by Advance NZ and lobby group Voices for Freedom, The Real News was a magazine published by Auckland's Jonathan Eisen and his wife Katherine Smith, who is director of Full Court Press. 

It had previously published conspiracy articles questioning "the truth" about the COVID-19 pandemic and vaccines. 

The person who complained about the advertisement in the magazine, which was distributed throughout central Christchurch, said they were "concerned the advertisement was making misleading therapeutic claims". The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) upheld the complaint.

In its decision, the ASA said the therapeutic claims made in the advertisement were not "substantiated".

"The Complaints Board agreed the advertisement did not contain the required mandatory information. This is because the advertisement did not include the name and address of the advertiser and did not include the following statement, 'Always read the label and use as directed.'"

Ross and former Advance NZ chairman Michael Kelly founded Praesidium Life Ltd in late 2020, Stuff reported earlier this year. Business records show they are the directors of the company. 

The ASA's decision also said the advertisement wasn't "socially responsible".

"This is because it was misleading, taking into account context, medium, audience and product and was in breach of… the Therapeutic and Health Advertising Code."

Advance NZ, led by Ross and conspiracy theorist Bill Te Kahika, repeatedly pushed COVID-19 misinformation in the lead up to election 2020. The party won just 0.9 percent of the vote and withdrew its registration from the Electoral Commission earlier this year.

The ASA said this specific Praesidium advertisement is not to be used again. Newshub has contacted Praesidium for a response.

Praesidium didn't respond to the ASA in relation to the complaint.