20 Cited in Tobacoo Sales Sting 12-10-01

PHONE: 326-4203
DECEMBER 10, 2001


A total of 20 retail outlets have been cited for selling cigarettes to minors during the months of October and November.

Personnel from the University of Hawaii’s Cancer Research Center and the Juvenile Aid Sections of East Hawaii conducted a tobacco sting operation at 56 retail stores in South Hilo, Puna, Ka’u and Kona.

As part of the operation, minors under the age of 18 were instructed to try to buy cigarettes at the stores. The young people were told that if they were asked to do so, they should present valid identification and to tell the truth about their age.

As a result of the sting, 20 of the retail store clerks who sold cigarettes to a minor received citations for a mandatory court appearance. Selling cigarettes to a minor under 18 is a violation of state law.

Lieutenant Henry W. Hickman of the Kona Criminal Investigation Section said further tobacco sting operations will be conducted in the future.

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