San Joaquin’s DA Puts Juul Labs in Her Crosshairs

San Joaquin County’s district attorney is taking aim at the country’s largest manufacturer of electronic cigarettes. The Stockton Record reports that San Joaquin County District Attorney Tori Verber Salazar is launching an investigation into Juul Labs over “knowingly false and misleading” advertising that has contributed to a youth e-smoking epidemic.

“Originally the face of Juul was intended to be a product that was rehabilitative, one in which individuals can transition off of tobacco or traditional cigarettes or combustible cigarettes into a safer product. ... While they were putting forth that image to America to market this product, what they actually did was double down and focused on our youth,” Verber Salazar said.

The investigation could result in a lawsuit against Juul.

Studies show teen vaping use skyrocketed between 2017-2018. Flavored products in particular have proved enticing for young people. As a result, the states of Michigan and Washington have banned flavored e-cigarettes. Los Angeles County has also approved a ban on flavored tobacco products. Action at the federal level is also expected.

“We will hold them responsible. Corporate America for some reason thinks they get a pass,” Verber Salazar said. “Well, they don’t in San Joaquin County because this is not right.”