2 e-cigarette firms sued in Australia
AUSTRALIA'S consumer watchdog has launched a lawsuit in the Federal Court against two e-cigarette retailers, saying the firms misled consumers with claims that their products are not carcinogenic.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said Social-Lites and Elusion New Zealand, both online retailers, claimed on their websites that their e-cigarettes did not contain toxic chemicals found in conventional cigarettes.
Tests commissioned by the ACCC found the e-cigarettes contain carcinogens.
E-cigarettes are metal tubes that heat liquids typically laced with nicotine and deliver vapour when inhaled.
Experts debate whether the devices can help people give up smoking and whether they are safe - with some studies raising concerns about the toxicity of some of the ingredients.
Social-Lites and Elusion face fines of up to A$1.1 million (S$1.1 million) for breaching consumer laws.
Social-Lites owner Lee O'Hare said he was seeking legal advice and that he did not believe his products were carcinogenic, when used as intended.
"It's only when people use vaporisers with high voltage capabilities do carcinogens form," he said.