Juul, Philip Morris Sued Under Racketeer Act For Targeting Kids

An anonymous reader quotes a report from Bloomberg: E-cigarette maker Juul Labs Inc. and Philip Morris USA Inc. were sued for illegally marketing nicotine-delivery devices to minors and deceiving consumers about the risks of vaping. The lawsuit was filed on behalf of a 19-year-old, Christian Foss, who says he became addicted to nicotine and suffered worsening asthma symptoms after he began using Juul's device at 16, and seeks to represent all Illinois minors who used it. It alleges that Juul and Philip Morris violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act, adopting the tobacco industry's past use of catchy ad campaigns aimed at children. The Justice Department invoked RICO to sue the industry two decades ago. "Mimicking Big Tobacco's past marketing practices, defendants prey on youth for financial gain," according to the lawsuit, filed Monday in federal court in Chicago. Philip Morris is a unit of Altria Group, which is also named as a defendant and which recently bought a 35% stake in Juul for $12.8 billion.

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