The online trader who prompted the landmark legal ruling which banned the sale of e-cigarettes in Western Australia has launched an appeal.
E-cigarette missionary Vince van Heerden was found guilty of selling items that resembled a cigarette or cigar, despite his version containing no nicotine, after being legally pursued by the state’s Department of Health.
The ruling effectively banned the sale of e-cigarettes in WA, making the State the first jurisdiction in the world to outlaw their sale.
Late last month, van Heerden was fined $1750 and ordered to pay the Health Department’s costs of bringing the action against him, which totalled more than $14,000.
But after a crowdsourced funding drive, the 33-year-old has now launched an appeal against the conviction
In an online posting, Van Heerden said his lawyers would argue that the Supreme Court was wrong because the state’s Tobacco Products Act was not intended to prohibit products designed to assist those who wish to give up smoking.
“Here we come Health Department. They may miss the point but we don't. We would like to not die, to have a less harmful alternative and we will fight for that right,” Van Heerden said.
No date for an appeal hearing has been fixed.