Proposed Law in Brazil to Criminalize Sale of E-Cigarettes to Minors

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Proposed Law in Brazil to Criminalize Sale of E-Cigarettes to Minors
Brazilian senator Randolph Rodriguez has proposed a bill to criminalize the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.

According to a report by the Brazilian media Senate News Agency on January 11, Senator Randolph Rodrigues has proposed a bill aimed at protecting the health of minors. The bill seeks to criminalize the sale or provision of e-cigarettes or similar devices to individuals under the age of 18.


The bill has been incorporated into the Children and Youth Law, explicitly specifying the range of penalties, including imprisonment for two to six years and a maximum fine of 94,600 reals (approximately 19,000 US dollars).


The bill (PL 6.161/2023) not only establishes fixed fines, but also sets a range of escalating penalties for various scenarios, including the origin of goods, criminal affiliations, and abuse of public office. The use of extreme methods such as violence, threats, firearms, or other forms of intimidation will result in increased fines.


The bill also stipulates the confiscation of criminal proceeds and assets, which will be allocated to the Children and Youth Rights Fund in crime-affected areas. Within 120 days of the bill's publication, the Ministry of Health will establish an interdepartmental and interregional task force to analyze, improve, and propose government and regulatory measures for the supply of e-cigarette devices.


Despite a ban on e-cigarette sales by the National Health Surveillance Agency (Anvisa) since 2009, data shows that Brazil still has 2.2 million e-cigarette users, with nearly a quarter of them falling in the 18 to 24 age range. The National Cancer Institute maintains that e-cigarettes contain toxic substances that could lead to cancer, respiratory diseases, and cardiovascular diseases. Senator Randolfe Rodrigues warns that the shortcomings in Anvisa's regulations have had "disastrous consequences" for public health in Brazil, particularly with regards to the impact on children and adolescents. He proposes this legislation with the aim of reclaiming Brazil's leadership position in the global anti-smoking movement, by extending regulations to new technologies in order to effectively prevent the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.


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