Skin scandal: 13 Thai celebrities could face jail time over ‘misleading' Magic Skin ads

By Amanda Lim contact

- Last updated on GMT

Thai authorities are taking action against 13 local celebrities for their alleged roles in promoting unlicensed cosmetic and weight-loss products. ©GettyImages
Thai authorities are taking action against 13 local celebrities for their alleged roles in promoting unlicensed cosmetic and weight-loss products. ©GettyImages
The Food and Drug Administration of Thailand is taking action against 13 local celebrities for their alleged roles in promoting unlicensed cosmetic and weight loss products from Magic Skin.

The Royal Thai Police has summoned them to hear charges for endorsing the products, which harmed almost 1,000 consumers.

During a press conference, FDA deputy chief Prapon Angtrakul said these 13 public figures could face imprisonment if found guilty.

More celebs in the crosshairs

Among them, 10 were being charged under the Cosmetics Act 2015 for promoting and exaggerating the effects of Mezzo Serum, reported The Nation.

The remaining three face charges for promoting products that violate the Food Act 1979.

Previously, 17 brand endorsers have been found guilty for their roles in promoting Magic Skin and were fined up to THB5,000 ($159) each.

National police deputy chief General Weerachai Songmetta said that the FDA was looking into pressing charges on another 24 celebrities.

To date, the authorities have already summoned 54 public figures linked to Magic Skin advertising.

Advertising of cosmetics with false information may lead to a jail term of up to one year and/or a fine of up to 100,000 baht.

Advertising of food products with false information carries a jail term of up to three years and/or a fine of up to 30,000 baht.

In May 2018, authorities seized 120 million tonnes of Magic Skin cosmetics and food supplements worth THB300m ($9.6m) from 186 suspects in a market near Don Mueng Airport.

According to the Bangkok Post​, the authorities received a tip-off that around 200 stores were allegedly selling illegal products, including those from Magic Skin.

After further inspection, the FDA deemed Magic Skin’s products to be ‘substandard’ and destroyed last month.

The firm’s executives, including owner Wannapha Puangson and her husband Korn Puangson, are currently facing prosecution and could have their assets seized, said Weerachai.

He added that the assets will be liquidated in order to compensate the victims of Magic Skin.

Endorsements gone wrong

That same month, eight celebrities, including singer Phonphan Chunhachai, better known as Jennifer Kim, reported to the police to explain their roles as brand ambassadors for Magic Skin.

These celebrities told the authorities that they had tired the products before promoting and were unaware that the products were unregistered and carried false FDA labels.

Phonphan stated that she did not experience any side effects from using the products and insisted that she looked up the products in the FDA database before she agreed to endorse the products.

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