- The Attorney General’s Office and
the Division of Consumer Affairs have filed
lawsuits against four Pennsylvania-based
companies and one Virginia-based corporation
for advertising and/or selling fireworks
for use in New Jersey, Attorney General
Zulima V. Farber and Consumer Affairs Director
Kimberly Ricketts announced today.
companies misled New Jersey citizens into
believing that they could legally transport,
possess and display fireworks in New Jersey.
By doing so, these companies not only subjected
our citizens to potential criminal prosecution
but also jeopardized their health and safety,”
Attorney General Farber said.
The State’s Complaints, filed in Superior
Court in Mercer County, allege that Pennsylvania-based
Keystone Fireworks, Phantom Fireworks, Spartan
Fireworks and Sky King Fireworks, and Virginia-based
Discount Fireworks, have committed multiple
violations of New Jersey’s Consumer
Fraud Act and the General Advertising Regulations.
The Fireworks Regulation Law provides that
it is unlawful for any person to offer for
sale, sell, possess or use fireworks in
New Jersey without a valid permit.
The State began its investigation earlier
this month and, as part of the investigation,
the Division of Consumer Affairs, with assistance
from the New Jersey State Police, made an
undercover purchase of fireworks from Discount
Fireworks. The fireworks purchased, at a
total price of $503.90, included assortment
packages, namely “American Hawk”
and “Armageddon,” as well as
the “Goliath” Artillery Shell
package. Discount Fireworks arranged for
the delivery of the fireworks to a New Jersey
location on June 20th.
The alleged violations of the Consumer
Fraud Act include the following unconscionable
fireworks for sale to New Jersey consumers;
Marketing fireworks for sale to New
Jersey consumers through their websites,
direct mail brochures and/or outdoor
Accepting telephone orders for fireworks
from New Jersey consumers;
Shipping fireworks to consumers in New
Failing to provide any disclaimer to
consumers on their websites or otherwise
stating that it is illegal for New Jersey
consumers to transport, possess and/or
display fireworks in New Jersey without
Additionally, the State alleges that the
companies violated the General Advertising
Regulations by providing maps and driving
directions on their websites from various
points in New Jersey to their retail locations
in Pennsylvania. Their websites also include
“Safety Tips for Shooting Fireworks,”
which state, “Follow your local and
state laws regarding possession and use
of fireworks” without including any
specific information as to New Jersey law.
The State also alleges that two of the companies,
Sky King Fireworks and Phantom Fireworks,
advertise in New Jersey on outdoor billboards
which were maintained by Steen Industries
and CBS Outdoor. The State alleges that
in so doing, the two billboard companies
also violated the CFA and Advertising Regulations.
As part of the initial filings, the State
is seeking to enjoin the companies from
selling or offering fireworks for sale to
New Jersey consumers for transport, possession
and/or use in New Jersey, and marketing
fireworks for sale to New Jersey consumers
by direct mailings, outdoor billboards or
other solicitations. The State is also seeking
the removal of the existing billboards.
safety is our number one concern during
Fourth of July celebrations, we encourage
New Jersey residents to attend community
fireworks displays that are handled by professionals
with the appropriate permit,” Consumer
Affairs Director Ricketts said.
In each Complaint, the State is ultimately
seeking the maximum statutory civil penalties
for each violation of the CFA and Advertising
Regulations, which is up to $10,000 for
the first violation and up to $20,000 for
each subsequent violation.
Deputy Attorneys General Cathleen O’Donnell
and Lorraine K. Rak are representing the
State in these actions.