New York Attorney General Letitia James announced a new lawsuit Tuesday against juul, the e-cigarette company, alleging that it misled consumers about the risks posed by e-cigarettes through deceptive advertising. New York said in the lawsuit that the marketing of Juul products downplayed their health risks and used “color images of attractive young models” to attract minors.
“There is no doubt that Juul’s aggressive advertising has had a major impact on the public health crisis that has fascinated young people in New York and across the country. “By glorifying e-cigarettes and downplaying nicotine found in e-cigarette products, Juul puts countless New Yorkers at risk. I am prepared to use all available legal tools to protect the health and safety of our youth. “
Juul has come under a lot of lawsuits and investigations over the past year after a sharp rise in the number of teenagers using e-cigarettes. Earlier this year, North Carolina’s attorney general filed a lawsuit against the company over its advertising strategy, and on November 18th it filed a similar lawsuit against California AG Xavier Becerra. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is also reportedly investigating Juul’s marketing practices. Both the New York State Assembly and the New York City Council are legislating to ban the direct sale of e-cigarettes.
The Trump administration announced earlier this year that it would work with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to remove all flavored e-cigarettes from shelves until the agency investigates and approves its sale location. This has also exacerbated Juul’s legal woes. Shortly after the news was announced, Juul posted a blog post announcing that all flavors of e-cigarettes would be removed from the market. Later, the company also stopped producing mint-flavored e-cigarettes.
James said the New York attorney general’s office is seeking a permanent injunction against Juul and ordered the company to pay an emissions fund to get rid of “the harm it causes to the public interest.”