The importation of electronic cigarettes into the United States can't be blocked by the Food and Drug Administration, a federal judge ruled Thursday.
The FDA considers electronic cigarettes -- battery-powered devices that deliver nicotine without tobacco or combustion -- to be unapproved drug devices and has told manufacturers they need FDA approval to sell them in the United States, the Washington Post reported.
Two U.S.-based e-cigarette distributors went to court to fight the FDA's policy of blocking and confiscating e-cigarettes when they reach U.S. ports. U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon granted a temporary injunction halting the FDA's actions.
Leon ruled that e-cigarettes are essentially a modern-day tobacco product and said the FDA had overstepped its authority in blocking their importation, the Post reported.