The comedian wanted to highlight the need for "tougher oversight to protect consumers from potentially predatory companies"
Comedian John Oliver has claimed to have pulled off the 'biggest giveaway in TV history' during a report on US debt buyers.
During the latest episode of his show Last Week Tonight, the host discussed the practice of companies in the US buying up debt cheaply before collecting it 'aggressively'.
Oliver described it as a 'grimy business that needs more oversight', and suggested that anybody could get involved in it.
To prove his point, the production team set up a company called the Central Asset Recovery Professionals or CARP ("named after the bottom-feeding fish").
The company then bought a portfolio of 'out of statute' medical debts worth almost $15 million dollars - which they were able to buy for around $60,000.
On the show, Oliver then proceeded to initiate debt forgiveness procedures on the entire amount - a 'giveaway' he says tops Oprah Winfrey's infamous free car giveaway.
However, he points out that while around 9,000 people will be helped directly by his actions, he points out: "We need much clearer rules and tougher oversight to protect consumers from potentially predatory companies".