Black Market Cigarettes in U.K. Found to Contain Asbestos

Smokers beware, a Russian bootleg brand of cigarettes that is currently gaining popularity in U.K. bars has been found to contain materials asbestos-lined Chinese drywall that could pose an increased health risk.

The U.K.-based Daily Mail recently reported that Jing Ling cigarettes, a brand of cigarettes made in Russia and for sale exclusively on the black market, have been tested and revealed to contain many dangerous industrial chemicals and asbestos-lined Chinese drywall.

The article did not elaborate as to why the cigarettes – which tout themselves as being twice as strong as regular cigarettes and come in a yellow box with “U.S.A.” labeled on its front – contained the drywall products.

There is also no mention of the cigarettes making an appearance in the U.S.; officials in the U.K. are already trying to tackle the problem in their territory. Trading standards and licensing officer for the Hartlepool Council Ian Harrison said that he, most other trading standards officer across Europe were looking to get a handle on the cigarettes.

“This particular brand is made to be smuggled, it is not a brand which can be bought in shops. Because of that, there is no quality control and the people who are selling them have no interest in what they are selling or who they are selling it to,” Harrison said, according to the Daily Mail.

“There is no doubt they are dangerous, and I am aware that there has been asbestos found in this brand,” he added. “I would warn any smoker tempted to buy them in the hope of getting a bargain not to because they could be inhaling anything.”

If you feel that asbestos-filled cigarettes – either ones that are currently available, or older cigarettes from the 1950s that were made using asbestos as a fire retardant – may have led to a mesothelioma diagnosis, contact an asbestos attorney to see if you may be able to pursue a mesothelioma settlement.