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After almost two years of an ongoing legal battle, a judge rules JUUL must pay North Carolina to settle a vaping lawsuit claiming the company marketed to minors.

Owner Amit Oli at Haight Street Tobacco shows Juul products allowed for sale on his shelves on Thursday, Aug. 29, 2019, in San Francisco, Calif.

Source: San Francisco Chronicle/Hearst Newspapers via Getty Images / Getty

For the past few years, JUUL has been the target of courts, lawmakers, parents, and everyone in between–Many without a horse in the race simply seeing this as big tobacco trying to take down the new competition.

The approach to attacking JUUL is the perfect one if you want to get the propaganda and conspiracies going. Everyone not on the JUUL team claims the company marketed toward minors with its products and that’s why it’s so successful. Never mind the age restrictions from retailers and the fact you need age verification to purchase on their website.

JUUL has become the face of vaping, and no matter what brand people are actually using, JUUL always gets the blame. In the last 18 months, we’ve seen JUUL’s array of tobacco products go from a wide variety of flavors down to just three due to flavor bans aimed to discourage kids. Complex is now reporting JUUL’s luck has gotten worse as the company has been ordered to pay North Carolina $40 Million.

North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein announced the settlement on Monday. The company has continued to deny that it targeted young people, leading to an increase in younger individuals addicted to its e-cigarette products. Stein, who filed the lawsuit in May 2019, said in a statement, “For years Juul targeted young people, including teens, with highly addictive e-cigarettes. It lit the spark and fanned the flames of a vaping epidemic among our children—one that you can see in any high school in North Carolina.”

The complaint accused the company of specifically designing and marketing its products to attract young buyers, and also accused Juul of misrepresenting the dangers of nicotine contained within its products. “This settlement is consistent with our ongoing effort to reset our company and its relationship with our stakeholders, as we continue to combat underage usage and advance the opportunity for harm reduction for adult smokers,” Juul spokesman Joshua Raffel said in a statement.

Now, JUUL will only be able to sell its products behind counters to help crack down on teens bypassing security measures, which makes no sense, since the kids were never allowed to buy them online anyway…but it looks good, right? JUUL offered to make a code system to where any product can be tracked to where it was purchased with a timestamp but apparently, that wasn’t good enough. If you wonder what made everyone take action for “the kids,” take a look at the chart below.

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