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Massachusetts AG: online vape sales violate law

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura T. Healey’s office has announced it is suing eight online e-cigarette sellers it says are violating a new state law banning sales of flavored tobacco products.

A complaint filed on Dec. 20 in Massachusetts Superior Court alleges the out-of-state companies improperly sold flavored tobacco products to buyers in the state and failed to protect against delivery of their products to minors.

According to Healey’s office, the companies sold vaping products in “flavors that appeal to young people,” including “Unicorn Frappe,” “Gingerbread Dude” and “Rainbow Nuggets.”

Healey is seeking a preliminary injunction to prevent illegal sales while the court case proceeds. A hearing on that motion is set for Jan. 7.

“These companies are in flagrant violation of our new state law that was put in place to protect young people from the serious harms caused by vaping,” Healey said in a statement.

The office alleges the companies do not use a method of mailing, shipping or delivery that requires the signature of a person who is of the minimum legal age before the package is released.

State regulations instituted by Healey in 2015 require sellers to ensure shipments of the products are received by a person 21 or older.

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