Mass. AG Healey sues e-cigarette manufacturer JUUL for ‘targeting youth’


BOSTON (WPRI) — Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey announced a lawsuit Wednesday against the company she blames for starting the youth vaping epidemic.

Healey said her office has filed a lawsuit against JUUL in Massachusetts Superior Court after months of investigating the company’s sales and procedures.

“JUUL bears responsibility for the millions of young people nationwide who are now addicted to e-cigarettes,” she said.

Healey said her lawsuit is different from others filed against JUUL because of the documents uncovered during the investigation.

“For the very first time, internal JUUL documents and photographs from its original ad campaign that show exactly what this company was trying to do. This is the first real window into JUUL’s original marketing plan and what it did to target our kids,” Healey explained.

According to Healey, JUUL’s advertising campaign purchased placements on media websites and television networks for kids like Cartoon Network and Seventeen.

She also said the company used flavors like creme brulee to appeal to teenagers.

“JUUL’s own documents show the company intentionally chose fashionable models and images that appeal to young people for its ads,” Healey added. “They also targeted celebrities and influencers to appeal to younger people.”

Healey said the company sold and shipped e-cigarettes to underage kids in Massachusetts. She claims some company reps even told some kids what cities to ship to if they had problems with age restrictions.

Healey also noted that more than half of Massachusetts high school students have reported using an e-cigarette.

“Students, we know, are vaping in gym, locker rooms, bathrooms — also known as ‘JUUL lounges’ — and even in class. Some are so addicted they are sleeping with these devices under their pillow,” Healey said.

Healey’s office previously sued eight other out-of-state vape manufacturers for shipping flavored vaping products to Massachusetts consumers and selling their products online.

Eyewitness News has reached out to a JUUL for comment and is waiting to hear back.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.


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