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Celebs who faked medical conditions

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Belle Gibson’s cancer story captivated the Internet. The Australian influencer was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was just 20 years old and given four months to live. According to The Guardian, she ditched radiotherapy and chemotherapy, “cut gluten and dairy,” and opted for alternative treatments like oxygen therapy and colonics — and they miraculously worked, or so her thousands of followers thought.

In 2013, Gibson used her story to launch the wellness app, The Whole Pantry. She vowed to donate a third of the proceeds to charity, landed a cookbook contract with Penguin, and Apple preinstalled her iPhone app on Apple Watches like a rogue U2 record. Not long after, she claimed cancer had re-emerged in her “blood, spleen, brain, uterus, and liver” and lamented about the short time she had left with her son. Then, the truth came out.

According to Who, the app’s proceeds never found their way to charity, and alleged friends of the blogger voiced their suspicions loudly enough that two journalists from The Sydney Morning Herald took on the case. Gibson was eventually forced to admit that none of it was true. So, what was the aftermath? According to ABC Australia, Consumer Affairs Victoria (CAV) investigated the blogger and filed a civil suit. A judge reportedly ruled that she may have had psychological or psychiatric delusions but was, in fact, guilty of “misleading and deceptive conduct.” BBC reports that Gibson was fined $322,000.

intro 1587997915Written by: Nicki

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