Seattle Public Schools files lawsuit against Juul over youth vaping rise

SEATTLE — Seattle Public Schools on Thursday announced a lawsuit against e-cigarette maker Juul Labs.

The lawsuit alleges that Juul’s advertising and product design deliberately targets minors and has contributed to a rise in youth vaping and addiction to nicotine. The district says it is asking a court to order the company to stop marketing to minors in addition to damages and funding for prevention education.

Also named in the suit are tobacco company Altria, which owns roughly a third of Juul, and vaping company Eonsmoke LLC.

Seattle Public Schools said Thursday in a release that its lawsuit will likely be transferred and become part of a group of pending cases in California.

Last month, a lawsuit by King County officials asked a judge to rule that the company was liable for the teen vaping epidemic in the county. The La Conner School district is also suing Juul and Altria.

San Francisco-based Juul is the best-selling e-cigarette brand in the U.S. The privately held company has been besieged by legal troubles, including multiple investigations by Congress, federal agencies and several state attorneys general. The company is also being sued by adults and underage Juul users who claim they became addicted to nicotine through the company’s products.

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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