Man sentenced for possessing alternative smoking products for sale

     A 39-year-old man was sentenced to two months' imprisonment by the West Kowloon Magistrates' Courts today (March 15) for possessing alternative smoking products (ASPs) for sale. 
     The man was intercepted during an operation by the Police on July 18 last year. He was found in possession of around 54 000 heatsticks and 11 heated tobacco product smoking devices inside his vehicle. He was subsequently arrested by the Police, and referred to the Department of Health (DH) for further investigation.
     The Smoking (Public Health) (Amendment) Ordinance 2021 (Cap. 371) came into operation on April 30 last year. The Ordinance prohibits the import, promotion, manufacture, sale and possession for commercial purposes of ASPs. Offenders are subject to a maximum fine of $50,000 and imprisonment for six months. As of March 7, 2023, the DH had issued 119 summonses for contraventions of the ASP ban, and there were 30 convicted cases.
     A spokesman for the DH said that the department will continue to take stringent enforcement actions against ASPs. The spokesman also urged members of the public against the use of any ASPs and stressed that these products contain similar amounts of nicotine to those of conventional cigarettes in order to sustain addiction. In addition, health hazards from long-term exposure to these new products are unknown. The Government appeals to smokers to quit smoking as early as possible for their own health and that of others. They are encouraged to call the DH's Integrated Smoking Cessation Hotline on 1833 183. The hotline is operated by registered nurses and provides professional counselling services on smoking cessation. Information on smoking cessation can also be obtained from

Ends/Wednesday, March 15, 2023
Issued at HKT 19:40