Juul Labs, Inc. and its Canadian affiliate, Juul Labs Canada Ltd. filed litigation against an illicit global network of entities and individuals that illegally sourced and resold authentic Juul pods and devices in the U.S. and abroad.
In a statement, the company said “one of the largest distributors of these diverted products are the purveyors of the PodVapes and PodMaster websites, entities based in Canada that acquired Juul products from the U.K., Canada, and U.S., to ship all over the world, disregarding the laws and regulations of a variety of jurisdictions.”
Juul is alleging that PodVapes, for example, acquired authentic pods from Canada and the U.K. in non-tobacco and non-menthol flavors, and shipped them into various states in the U.S. to be illegally resold. If proven, these activities violate U.S. federal, state, and local tobacco regulations.
The company says “diverted products are part of a growing illicit market for vapor products, including compatible and counterfeit products. Diverted products, in particular, are authentic products that are produced for lawful distribution in an intended market, but are illegally diverted into a different, non-compliant market without authorization from the manufacturer.”
Such measures violate laws and regulations in various jurisdiction and undermine underage-prevention measures because they often are sold through non-traditional retail channels without age-verification.
Juul claims evidence of illicit activity first started to emerge in February 2019. With this legal filing, Juul “aims to disrupt these illegal operations while gathering more information about how these products are distributed across the global trade channel. We stand ready to fully support and cooperate with law enforcement, regulators, and other key stakeholders in every jurisdiction impacted by this illicit trade.”