Supplement At Center Of McDonnell Trial To Be Taken Off Market

The company that Virginia ex-Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) is accused of promoting in exchange for gifts and loans announced Monday that it plans to halt the sale of its dietary supplement Anatabloc.

The Washington Post reported that Rock Creek Pharmaceuticals opted not to sell Anatabloc and a related product called CigRx until it resolves the Federal Drug Administration’s concerns about its marketing of the supplement as having certain health benefits. Anatabloc is not FDA-approved.

Rock Creek is the latest iteration of Star Scientific, the company where businessman Jonnie Williams served as CEO until he resigned in late 2013 while under investigation for giving more than $150,000 in gifts to the McDonnells.

Prosecutors in the federal corruption case against McDonnell and his wife argue that the governor used his office to promote Star Scientific and Anatabloc. They are trying to prove that a 2011 luncheon at the Executive Mansion was held specifically for Star Scientific and intended to be a launch party for the product.

A picture of McDonnell smiling and holding a bottle of the supplement was once posted to the company’s Facebook page, although McDonnell’s former aides say the governor did not give his permission. That photo was entered as evidence during the trial.