SINGAPORE — The Singapore Police Force (SPF) have arrested six individuals suspected of being involved in the illegal trade of electronic vaporisers (e-vaporisers).
On the night of 28 March 2023, SPF responded to a call for assistance at a multi-storey car park of Blk 592 Montreal Link.
Upon arrival, they detained six individuals suspected of being involved in the illegal trade of electronic vaporisers (e-vaporisers) at the location. The driver of a van was allegedly distributing parcels containing e-vaporisers to five persons who were assisting in the delivery to buyers.
Following the arrest, officers from the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) were immediately activated to assist in the investigation.
The HSA then conducted surveillance of a warehouse unit in Mandai on 29 March 2023, where supplies of e-vaporisers were suspected to be kept for collection by runners.
During the operation, HSA raided the warehouse unit and seized more than 85,000 e-vaporisers and related components.
A total of five suspected runners, aged 20 to 33 years old, were detained at the warehouse and are currently assisting HSA in the investigation. This successful operation, which spanned more than 72 hours, disrupted the operations of an illegal e-vaporisers supply chain.
This seizure of e-vaporisers is the largest to date, surpassing the seizure in 2021 where more than S$2.2 million worth of e-vaporisers and related components were seized.
In connection to this, the SPF arrested a 27-year-old male driver and a 26-year-old man, who were both arrested for rash or negligent conduct with respect to any machinery in their possession.
The 27-year-old male driver was also arrested for using criminal force to deter a public servant from the discharge of his duty. The four men, aged 22 to 27 years old, are also assisting in investigations.
HSA warns the public in its press statement on Monday that the Tobacco (Control of Advertisements and Sale) Act 1993 prohibits the import, distribution, sale, or offer for sale of imitation tobacco products, including shisha tobacco, smokeless tobacco, chewing tobacco such as Gutkha, Khaini, Zarda, electronic vaporisers, and their accessories.
Any person convicted of an offense is liable to a fine of up to S$10,000, imprisonment of up to six months or both for the first offense, and a fine of up to S$20,000, imprisonment of up to 12 months or both for the second or subsequent offense. All prohibited tobacco items will be seized and confiscated.
The purchase, use, and possession of e-vaporisers have been banned in Singapore since February 2018.