The city of Chicago, Ill., is suing Vapes.com and a marketing contractor for the e-commerce retailer.
In a new chapter of litigation against companies of the e-cigarette industry, Chicago’s city government announced a new round of litigation alleging that vape companies are still attempting to addict young people to new electronic cigarettes and nicotine.
Vapes.com, a small e-commerce company, and Equte LLC, a marketing contractor for the company, has been sued by the city’s Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection for direct marketing and selling flavored vapor products to underaged people across Chicagoland. This is the first lawsuit that enforces the citywide ban on flavored tobacco products, which was implemented some four months ago.
“E-cigarettes are unhealthy and addictive, and businesses deliberately target young people in the hope they’ll develop lifelong customers,” said Mayor Lightfoot in a press release. “The City of Chicago’s message to vaping companies is clear: If you break the law, we will go after you, especially if you try to sell to our youth.”
BACP conducted the investigation that supposedly identified the defendants as having violated the City’s flavored tobacco ban, notes Lightfoot.
“BACP takes great pride in keeping our young people safe from vaping and holding bad actors accountable,” said BACP Commissioner Rosa Escareno in the same press release. “We will continue to closely monitor activity and pursue all incidents so that every e-cigarette company understands that flavored vape sales are not welcome in the city of Chicago.”
Chicago filed numerous lawsuits against vaping manufacturers and retailers during Lightfoot’s tenure and the term of former Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
Chicago is also one of the largest US municipal governments to ban flavored electronic cigarette products. San Francisco, Calif., was the first.
This is a developing story.