A British man has been charged with a federal crime after being accused of smuggling a phony coronavirus cure into the US, prosecutors said.

Frank Richard Ludlow of West Sussex was charged in Los Angeles federal court with introducing misbranded drugs into interstate commerce and could face up to three years in prison if convicted, according to the US attorney’s office.

The 59-year-old is in custody after being arrested on drug charges in the UK last week.

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Prosecutors alleged that Ludlow, who is not a doctor, had been selling a concoction called “Trinity Remedy”, that he touted as a “miracle cure” for various ailments, to people in California and Utah via mail.

“This cure’ – later rebranded as ‘Trinity Mind, Body & Soul’ – allegedly contained vitamin C, an enzyme mix, potassium thiocyanate, and hydrogen peroxide,” the US attorney’s office statement said.

“Consumers were instructed to add 18 ounces of water, say a prayer, drink half of the solution, take a probiotic along with bee pollen, and then ingest the remainder of the solution.”

Authorities say Ludlow sold between 300 and 400 of the treatment kits, but in February or March of this year as the coronavirus pandemic worsened, he began selling the kits under a new name: “Trinity Covid-19 Sars Antipathogenic Treatment.”

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The treatments have not been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration for any medical use.

“Every major health authority has warned that there is no specific antiviral treatment for Covid-19 and no vaccine to prevent coronavirus infection,” according to the US attorney’s office.

“Hucksters who hawk ‘treatments’ for this deadly disease put consumers’ lives at risk by peddling unapproved drugs,” US Attorney Nick Hanna said.