13 people convicted for illegal online sale of e-vaporisers

SINGAPORE – Thirteen people were convicted for selling electronic vaporisers, or e-vaporisers, and their related components illegally online, said the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) on Wednesday (July 28).

They were convicted in Court from March to June. A total of $164,500 in fines was handed out.

Electronic vaporisers are battery-operated devices that deliver vaporised nicotine for users to inhale. They come in the form of e-cigarettes, e-pipes and e-cigars.

Those convicted were between 20 and 40 years old.

HSA noted that they had purchased the e-vaporisers and related components from overseas suppliers and sold them illegally on various local social media and e-commerce platforms.

“HSA conducts active surveillance on these platforms and will take enforcement actions against those who buy or sell such products online,” it said.

More than $20,000 worth of e-vaporisers and related components have been seized.

One of the offenders, Goh Yew Teck, 40, was fined $13,000 in May for offences relating to importing, advertising and offering to sell e-vaporisers, related parts, and e-liquids with nicotine.

He was also selling unregistered medicine like cough syrup and sleeping pills, by buying and smuggling them from overseas and then selling them on e-commerce platform Carousell and messaging app WhatsApp.

He was sentenced to 13 weeks’ imprisonment for his offences relating to these illegal products.

Another offender, Cha Teng Chian, 29, used social media and platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, WeChat and WhatsApp to advertise and sell e-vaporisers and their related components.

He was fined $53,500 for his offences.

From Jan 1, 2018 to June 30 this year, HSA prosecuted 56 people for selling e-vaporisers and their related components.

The highest fine meted out so far was $99,000 for the illegal sale of these prohibited items.

It is an offence in Singapore to sell, possess for sale, import or distribute e-vaporisers and their related components.

Any person who is convicted can be fined up to $10,000, or jailed for up to six months, or both for the first offence.

The fine can go up to $20,000 and the jail term up to 12 months or both for the second or subsequent offence.

Since Feb 2018, it is also an offence to possess, purchase or use e-vaporisers and their related components.

Offenders can be fined up to $2,000 per offence.

From Feb 2018 to June 30 this year, 4,316 people were caught for the possession and use of e-vaporisers and their related components.