Florida-based retail health company Mercola Market and its employees were shocked when JP Morgan Chase Bank suddenly terminated their bank accounts without explanation, Florida’s Voice reported.
Mercola Market, a company renowned for its specialty food, drinks, supplements, pet products, and other health items, is owned by Dr. Joseph Mercola, a critic of COVID-19 vaccines and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Dr. Mercola has practiced medicine since 1985 and founded the world’s largest natural health website.
On July 13, the company, along with its CEO, CFO, and some family members, received identical letters from Chase Bank stating that their accounts were to be closed. The reason for this sudden decision, however, was left unexplained.
“Financial institutions have an obligation to know our customers and monitor transactions that flow through our customers’ accounts. After careful consideration, we decided to close your accounts because of unexpected activity on this or another Chase account,” according to the letter from Chase Bank.
The owner, Dr. Joseph Mercola, was critical of COVID-19 vaccines and the FDA, and believed the virus originated from a NIH-funded lab pic.twitter.com/U95xz9BvkC
— Florida’s Voice (@FLVoiceNews) July 25, 2023
A voicemail from a Chase representative to CEO Steven Rye stated that the reason for closing his personal and his wife’s accounts could not be disclosed “for legal reasons.”
Still, Rye maintains the belief that the closures were a direct result of Dr. Mercola’s views on the pandemic.
Rye was quoted by Florida’s Voice, saying, “I believe they cancelled all of the accounts because of Dr. Mercola’s (our employer) opinions. He has carried a contradictory view throughout the COVID narrative and co-authored the best selling book ‘The Truth About COVID-19,’ which exposed the likelihood that this virus was engineered in a laboratory funded by the NIH.”
Rye also shared that his children would not be allowed to open accounts with Chase Bank in the future, sparking further outrage and disbelief.
Amalia Legaspi, the CFO of Mercola Market, revealed that her personal account and her son’s account, used for college expenses, were canceled. More critically, Legaspi’s joint checking account with her bedridden husband in the Philippines was closed, significantly hampering her ability to provide for his medical needs.
“I received the letter during weekend and I was surprised that we received the same letters for business accounts with exact wordings,” Legaspi said.
“I have to provide all the legal documentations including notarized physicians affidavit from the Philippines to prove that my husband is incapable of handling his finances and request the Federal to directly deposit the pension to my own personal account,” Legaspi added.
Chase Bank has remained relatively tight-lipped on the matter “to protect the privacy of their clients.”
Dr. Joseph Mercola penned an editorial titled “The Censorship of Mercola – A Timeline,” published in The Post & Email earlier this year.
Mercola outlines a series of incidents that he perceives as censorship and violations of his free speech rights, which he claims began following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He recalls the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) calling on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to take action against him for recommending vitamin D.
His conflicts with authorities escalated when he published a peer-reviewed scientific paper detailing the benefits of vitamin D at the end of October 2020. On Christmas Eve of the same year, Attorney General Letitia James issued a cease-and-desist notice to him, demanding the cessation of sharing information about how immune-boosting nutritional supplements might lower COVID-19 risk. The FDA issued a similar warning to Dr. Mercola.