JUUL Labs, an e-cig maker, announced Tuesday (Sept. 11) that it has filed trademark claims against 30 entities in China for selling counterfeit JUUL products on eBay.
In a press release, the company said the Federal Court in the Eastern District of Virginia granted it a temporary restraining order and froze the PayPal accounts of the entities that were selling fake products without regulatory oversight or the age verification processes JUUL employs. JUUL said the filing represents the company’s commitment to keeping fake JUUL products off the market and to protect the consumer and fight underage usage.
“Counterfeit products pose a significant risk to the public, and we are taking swift action to stop those who are selling fake JUUL products without age verification,” said Gerald Masoudi, chief legal officer at JUUL in the press release. “We will do everything in our power to restrict counterfeiters from flooding the market with fake products to protect consumers and combat underage use.”
According to the company, the 30 entities in China sold counterfeit JUUL products, including devices and pods, which may have put the public at risk because their sourcing and ingredients were unknown. Authentic JUUL products meet strict quality control standards, the company said in the press release. In addition, it said it employs strict age-verification processes on its eCommerce site, whereas counterfeiters do not verify age. In addition to the filing, the company said it is working with online sales platforms, including Amazon and eBay, to take down illegal sales of its product. Since January 2018, JUUL said it has worked to remove more than 16,000 listings from online marketplaces. Only authorized dealers are permitted to sell JUUL products.
“The scale of counterfeit JUUL products is alarming,” said Kevin Burns, JUUl Labs’ CEO in the same press release. “These products raise health concerns, since the ingredients and origin are unknown. These counterfeiters also drive a black market where there is no age verification. The temporary restraining order is an important first step, and we will take action against counterfeiters to protect consumers.”