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Long IslandCrime

2 men sold vaping products to underage customers, police say

Two men were charged with Town of Hempstead violations for selling vaping products to underage customers in a sting operation Thursday, Nassau police said. 

Shahid Faraz, 39, of East Meadow, and Bashir Hassan, 29, of Brooklyn, were charged with violations for sale of age-restricted products, police said.

Police said they sent a person under the age of 21 to buy JUUL mint pods from Faraz at a 7-Eleven at 2380 Jerusalem Ave. in Bellmore, and from Hassan at Smoke Zone, 3484 Merrick Rd. in Seaford. 

The men are due in Second District Court, Hempstead, on Dec. 3. 

JUUL Labs, the company that makes the pods, announced Thursday it would stop selling them in the United States following the release of studies related to two national surveys of tobacco and drug use by young people. 

One of those, the 2019 National Youth Tobacco Survey, found what the Food and Drug Administration called “disturbing rates of e-cigarette use among both middle and high school students,” with a majority of e-cigarette users reporting JUUL as their usual brand. 

Menthol and mint-flavored e-cigarettes are becoming increasingly popular among youth, used by an estimated 1.2 million students who use e-cigarettes exclusively, according to an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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