Arnold Schwarzenegger has filed a $10 million (£6.25 million) lawsuit against bosses at a Nevada-based nutritional supplements company, amid allegations they have been exploiting his name and image to illegally promote their products.

The Hollywood action man's lawyer, Marty Singer, has accused executives at AN USA Management Group and Arnold Nutrition Group of "shameful conduct", insisting the actor and former Mr. Universe "would never endorse or affiliate himself with any fitness or nutritional product without first undertaking rigorous research, testing and due diligence to ensure that the product is healthy and helpful to athletes".

The legal papers, filed in a Santa Monica, California court this week (begs12May14), suggests the defendants have "brazenly stolen and exploited Schwarzenegger's name, image, likeness and reputation to promote Arnold Nutrition and Arnold Nutrition products without ever having contacted him."

Lawyer Singer adds, "Arnold Nutrition is committing a fraud on the public and will be held fully accountable."

Schwarzenegger is demanding damages for violation of publicity rights and unfair competition.