Attorney General Josh Stein Announces Courts Shut Down Children-Targeting Vape Companies in NC
RALEIGH, NC (October 7, 2019) — Attorney General Josh Stein today announced that he has made significant progress in his lawsuits against e-cigarette companies VapeCo Distribution, Electronic Tobacconist, Electric Lotus, Direct eLiquid, Beard Vape, Tinted Brew, Juice Man, and EonSmoke. The suits, which are brought under the North Carolina Unfair or Deceptive Trade Practices Act, allege that these companies are aggressively targeting children and do not require appropriate age verification when selling these dangerous and addictive products.
“We are only beginning to see the harmful, even deadly health impacts vaping has on young people,” said Attorney General Josh Stein. “But we absolutely know that their tobacco use is on the rise – and that these companies have aggressively marketed their e-cigs to addict a new generation to nicotine. I’m pleased that the courts have shut these companies down while the cases continue. I will do everything in my power to protect our kids from any illegal business practices.”
VapeCo Distribution has agreed not to sell, offer deliver, market, or otherwise provide vapor products in North Carolina. A court agreed to put in place a temporary restraining order to prohibit Electronic Tobacconist from selling its products in North Carolina and there are preliminary injunctions in place for Electric Lotus, Direct eLiquid, and Beard Vape to prohibit them from selling products in North Carolina for the duration of each litigation.
Attorneys for three other companies, Tinted Brew, Juice Man, and Eonsmoke, in addition to VapeCo, have sought to move their cases to federal court – a move that the Department of Justice is fighting to stop.
Attorney General Stein’s lawsuits ask for the courts to shut down sales from these companies in North Carolina. In May of this year, Attorney General Stein filed a similar lawsuit against Juul.