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Virus Air Scrubber Falsely Marketed, Consumer Suit Says (1)

May 10, 2021, 5:21 PMUpdated: May 10, 2021, 6:31 PM

Global Plasma Solutions Inc. misleadingly touts its air ionization technology as capable of removing almost all Covid-19 virus from a room within an hour, a consumer alleges in a proposed nationwide class action.

It also inaccurately claims that the technology doesn’t produce harmful byproducts, Maryland resident Robert S. Garner says in the lawsuit, filed May 7 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware.

GPS is incorporated in Delaware and headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., according to the complaint. It allegedly sells seven air purifier models with its patented “needlepoint bipolar ionization” technology. Its founder has said the method is advantageous because it goes “out into the space” of the room and seeks out contaminants, according to the complaint.

GPS’s claims that its technology eliminates volatile organic compounds are contradicted by studies showing that it increases the concentration of some of those compounds, Garner says. Its claims that the products don’t add harmful byproducts is wrong because they emit acetone, ethanol, and other toxic chemicals, he says.

And independent testing hasn’t replicated claims that its products can achieve certain benchmarks, including that it “can reduce SARS-CoV-2 by 98.33% within 60 minutes,” Garner alleges.

In “one instance, Global Plasma Solutions used a chamber the size of a shoebox to support its claim that its Products could kill COVID-19 for a home or school,” he said. “In another instance, Global Plasma Solutions ‘blasted’ the testing chambers with 27,000 ions per cubic centimeter,” which its products can’t do in real-world conditions, he said.

GPS said it just learned of the suit and intends “to aggressively defend our technology and claims.”

“GPS was founded 13 years ago to safely deliver the clean air benefits of ionization without the negative effects of other ionization technologies,” the company said in an emailed statement Monday. “Testing in independent labs and feedback from thousands of installations demonstrate that GPS technology works and can play an important role in making comprehensive air cleaning and filtration systems even more effective.”

Causes of Action: Fraudulent concealment, breach of express and implied warranties, violation of consumer-protection laws, and unjust enrichment.

Potential Class Size: GPS has sold tens of thousands of units at least, according to the complaint.

Relief: Compensatory and punitive damages; restitution and disgorgement; and orders stopping the products’ sale and forcing corrective action.

Attorneys: Chimicles Schwartz Kriner & Donaldson-Smith LLP; Reich & Binstock LLP; the Mills Law Firm; and the Keeton Firm LLC represent Garner and the proposed class.

The case is Garner v. Glob. Plasma Sols. Inc., D. Del., No. 1:21-cv-00665, complaint 5/7/21.

(Updated with comment from company in seventh and eighth paragraphs.)

To contact the reporter on this story: Martina Barash in Washington at mbarash@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Rob Tricchinelli at rtricchinelli@bloomberglaw.com; Peggy Aulino at maulino@bloomberglaw.com

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