Juul agreed to pay $462 million to six states and the District of Columbia to settle charges that it violated numerous laws in marketing tobacco products to youth, prosecutors said Wednesday.
The agreement, announced by prosecutors from New York, California and four other states, follows an earlier $438.5 million Juul settlement with 34 different US states and marks the latest black mark on the e-cigarette company.
“Juul lit a nationwide public health crisis by putting addictive products in the hands of minors and convincing them that it’s harmless—today they are paying the price for the harm they caused,” said New York Attorney General Letitia James.
James sued Juul in November 2019, alleging the company glamorized smoking, devised “fruity, sweet and minty” flavors meant to appeal to youth and misled consumers about the safety of its products.
The settlement will fund underage vaping abatement programs, while also adding restrictions on products sold at stores and imposing age verification requirements online, according to a press release from James’ office.
Juul also is barred from marketing to young people; cannot provide free samples to consumers; and must undertake regular retail compliance checks at some stores.
The other states joining the settlement are Colorado, Illinois, Massachusetts and New Mexico.
On its website Juul described the agreement as “another critical part in our ongoing commitment to resolve issues from the company’s past.”
“With this settlement, we are nearing total resolution of the company’s historical legal challenges and securing certainty for our future.”
© 2023 AFP
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