Philadelphia, Pittsburgh CBP Officers Seize Nearly Half-Million Dollars in Unapproved e-Cigarette Products
PHILADELPHIA – U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the Port of Philadelphia and the Port of Pittsburgh have been seizing counterfeit and unapproved vaping products since June, racking up 48 combined seizures worth an estimated $444,000.
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), tobacco products imported or offered for import into the United States must comply with all applicable requirements under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FD&C Act), as amended by the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act (Tobacco Control Act). In April, the FDA issued new enforcement priorities that regulate the unauthorized importation of flavored cartridge-based e-cigarettes.
The CBP e-cigarette pod seizures span from June 5 through August 11. CBP’s Port of Pittsburgh seized 40 shipments of e-cigarettes that were destined to addresses in Allegheny, Beaver and Mercer Counties. The shipments collectively included 28,138 e-cigarette pods under brand names Bidi, Pop, and Puff, and had a combined value of $206,973.
CBP’s Port of Philadelphia seized eight shipments of e-cigarettes that were destined to addresses in Bucks, Chester and Delaware Counties. Collectively, the shipments included 30,400 e-cigarette pods under brand names Eonsmoke, Pop, Puff, and St!k, and had a combined value of $236,881.
All e-cigarettes were shipped from either China or Hong Kong. All of the e-cigarette products were destroyed.
“Counterfeit and unapproved vaping products pose a very serious health concern to users as they are likely manufactured in unregulated facilities with unverified ingredients,” said Casey Durst, Director of Field Operations for CBP’s Baltimore Field Office. “Customs and Border Protection’s trade enforcement mission places a significant emphasis on intercepting illicit products that could harm American consumers, and we will continue to work with our consumer safety partners to identify and seize unsafe and illicit goods.”
CBP's border security mission is led at ports of entry by CBP officers from the Office of Field Operations. CBP officers screen international travelers and cargo and search for illicit narcotics, unreported currency, weapons, counterfeit consumer goods, prohibited agriculture, and other illicit products that could potentially harm the American public, U.S. businesses, and our nation’s safety and economic vitality.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection is the unified border agency within the Department of Homeland Security charged with the management, control and protection of our nation's borders at and between official ports of entry. CBP is charged with securing the borders of the United States while enforcing hundreds of laws and facilitating lawful trade and travel.