B.C. police seize $100K of vaping products, bust group allegedly selling at schools

Click to play video: 'Saanich business raided, accused of selling vaping products at schools'
Saanich business raided, accused of selling vaping products at schools
WATCH: Saanich police have raided a business accused of selling vaping products to teens at local schools. – Mar 22, 2023

Police in Saanich, B.C., say they’ve busted a sophisticated operation selling vaping products to kids, often on school grounds, and seized more than $100,000 worth of product.

Saanich police began investigating in November 2022, amid reports that people were showing up at middle and high schools to sell the vaping products to minors.

In a Wednesday media release, police said they subsequently witnessed people selling the products to youth at schools across the Capital Regional District, both during and after school hours.

Police also witnessed suspects selling to youth in parks and malls, and accepting cash or cards as payments.

Click to play video: 'UBC Okanagan study on vaping links advertising to increase in teen use'
UBC Okanagan study on vaping links advertising to increase in teen use

The sellers were equipped with portable point-of-sale machines, and used food delivery service bags to hide their products, police allege.

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“It is clear that the items are branded and marketed in such a way to entice youth into buying them, and these individuals specifically targeted schools to sell their products,” Saanich police Const. Markus Anastasiades said.

The Saanich Police Department’s Street Crime Unit, supported by the Greater Victoria Emergency Response Team searched a business in the 700-block of Vanalman Avenue in Victoria on Friday, where they seized the alleged contraband.

The seizure included vape kits, pens, e-cigarettes, tanks, e-liquids and disposables, according to police, along with liquids containing up to 98 per cent THC content and some tobacco products.

Police made no arrests, but said their investigation was ongoing.

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