Tobacco Cos. Lose Challenge To RI City's Advertising Law

Law360, New York (December 10, 2012, 10:04 PM EST) -- A Rhode Island federal judge on Monday dismissed a suit by nine tobacco companies, including R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co. and Philip Morris USA Inc., against Providence, R.I., ruling that the city's new ordinances limiting tobacco advertisements did not violate the First Amendment.

U.S. District Judge Mary M. Lisi said that because the ordinances ban the redemption of coupons or multipack discounts and limit the sale of flavored tobacco products to smoking bars, the city laws regulate commercial activity, but not First Amendment-protected commercial speech.

"Because both...
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