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New Zealand schoolgirls cost lying corporation $2 million


Global drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline faces a court case on Tuesday for misleading advertising after two 14-year-olds found its popular blackcurrant drink Ribena contained almost no vitamin C.

High school students Anna Devathasan and Jenny Suo tested the children's drink against advertising claims that "the blackcurrants in Ribena have four times the vitamin C of oranges" in 2004.

Instead, the two found the syrup-based drink contained almost no trace of vitamin C, and one commercial orange juice brand contained almost four times more than Ribena.

GSK paid little attention to the claims of Devathasan and Suo until their complaints reached the Commerce Commission.

But it now faces 15 charges related to misleading advertising in an Auckland court, risking potential fines of up to NZ$3 million ($2.1 million).

And here's the tragic thing:

"We thought we were doing it wrong, we thought we must have made a mistake," Devathasan, now aged 17, told New Zealand newspapers of the school experiment.

They'd trusted the corporation....

NOTE How, well, odd of AP to classify this story under "Odd News."

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