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Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt announced Tuesday that he has filed a lawsuit against Christian televangelist Jim Bakker for misleading claims about a product sold through his show that a guest said could cure the coronavirus.
The lawsuit said Sherill Sellman claimed that "Silver Solution" can cure the fast-spreading illness during a Feb. 12 episode of "The Jim Bakker Show." The lawsuit names Bakker and Morningside Church Productions as defendants.
During the broadcast, Bakker asked Sellman if the product could cure the disease.
Jim Bakker is being sued by Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt over claims on his show that a product sold on its website can cure the new coronavirus. (Photo by Michael Tran/FilmMagic)
"Well let’s say it hasn’t been tested on this strain of the coronavirus, but it’s been tested on other strains of the coronavirus and has been able to eliminate within 12 hours," Sellman said, The Hill reported. “Totally eliminate it. Kills it. Deactivates it.”
The product is sold for $125 on the show's website.
The Jim Bakker show did not immediately respond to messages from Fox News. In a statement to The Washington Post, the show said: “We believe in Optivida Silver Solution … because of the research and the advice from medical professionals that we respect."
“What has cemented that belief comes from the countless testimonies of its benefits and what we have seen and experienced ourselves” the statement continued.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and New York Attorney General Letitia James also took issue with the claims and sent cease and desist letters to Bakker following the episode.
"Your show's segment may mislead consumers as to the effectiveness of the Silver Solution product in protecting against the current outbreak," James said in her letter.
The World Health Organization (WHO) said there is no known FDA-approved medicine or vaccine able to prevent or treat COVID-19 at this time.
Schmitt is seeking a restraining order and permanent injunction against Bakker selling the product.