High Gas Prices Inspire Con Artists

by : Dave Larsen

The high price of gasoline brings out the worst in some people. It also brings out the gullibility in others. A spate of rip-offs have been uncovered recently, all designed to take advantage of people's desperation to lower their fuel bills.

Texas based company BioPerformance, Inc., was shut down in May for being an illegal pyramid scheme and marketing a "magic gas pill" that wasn't magic at all--unless moth balls are magic.

Drawing on the desire for cheap gas at a time when gas prices are at record heights, BioPerformance claimed to have a "magic gas pill" that would increase fuel efficiency by 30% and reduce harmful emissions by half. In independent laboratory tests at the University of Texas and a university in Florida, the gas pills were discovered to be nothing but moth balls! Moth balls not only won't improve gas mileage, they can actually hurt your car's engine instead of helping it. Moth balls are also deadly to people, although the Bioperformance bottle claimed the pills were non-toxic.

"These claims are bogus," said Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott. "The pill does absolutely nothing to improve gas mileage. The company is merely a smokescreen to trigger the recruitment of more and more paying members into what appears to be an illegal pyramid scheme."

Along with promoting a product that is dangerous, BioPerformance was found to be an illegal pyramid scheme masquerading under the disguise of a multi-level marketing company. In legitimate multi-level marketing, profit comes from how much product a person sells; in illegal pyramid schemes, profit comes from recruiting more people into the program.

According to the BioPerformance website, at the time the company was shut down, it had 4,500 members in Texas and $25 million in sales. All that was built in just five months, which goes to show how desperate people are to save money at the gas pump.

You must be careful, there are very few product on the market today that will help you get better gas mileage. Bioperformance is one of the worst cases and fortunately, they've been put out of business and their owners are in serious legal trouble.