Vaping Arizona Lawsuit

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich speaks at a Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020, news conference in Phoenix where he announced consumer fraud lawsuits against e-cigarette makers Juul Labs and Eonsmoke. The Republican said both firms used deceptive marketing of flavored products with high nicotine content to hook young people. 

Arizona is suing vaping companies Juul Labs and Eonsmoke for what the state says are fraudulent advertisements and violations of the Consumer Fraud Act.

Lawsuits against each company were filed in Maricopa County Superior Court on Jan 6. 

“I am committed to doing everything I can to help combat the dangerous trend of youth vaping,” Attorney General Mark Brnovich said in statements to The Center Square. "You can't flout the law by selling illegal products and not be held accountable." 

The Juul lawsuit rehashes the argument that the company knowingly marketed to youth. Brnovich cited a study conducted by Stanford tobacco researchers that accuses Juul of selling their products through a vivid social media campaign. The campaign featured adults in their younger 20s posing with a Juul on Instagram. 

The Attorney General’s lawsuits state that both companies should be held liable for up to $10,000 per each violation of the state's Consumer Fraud Act. These counts for both companies include a series of failures to prevent youth uptake and for supposedly misleading consumers.

Brnovich filed the lawsuits amid a national regulatory push. The Food and Drug Administration, by consequence, was directed by President Donald Trump to implement a sales ban on flavored pod-based products after the president changed the national legal sales age to 21 years from 18 years. Juul and Eonsmoke produce pods for vape pens and other vaporizers referred to as “closed-systems.” 

Republicans support Trump's action, as do some Democrats. Most lawmakers are concerned over the apparent "compromise" deal the administration supposedly struck with stakeholders. Public health advocacy groups, including state chapters in Arizona, opposed the plan only to ban a portion of vapor products on the market. 

Another lawsuit against Juul comes from a 19-year-old teen who alleges that the company willingly misled him through advertising, which resulted in nicotine addiction, other health concerns, distress, and "diminished" life. This lawsuit was filed in an Arizona federal court seeking relief for civil violations, including injunctive relief, and a jury trial.