Van Nuys: The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) (Van Nuys, West Valley, and North Hollywood Vice Units), in conjunction with Detective Support and Vice Division (DSVD), the Los Angeles City Attorney Tobacco Enforcement Unit, Alcohol Beverage Control (ABC), State Board of Equalization, and Sate of California Labor Department, conducted enforcement on six hookah lounges in the Van Nuys - Sherman Oaks area.
All locations were in violation of Los Angeles Municipal Code 41.50.B.2.c which states that smoking (including the smoking of hookah tobacco) is prohibited in outdoor dining areas or in areas intended for the consumption of food. The owners of these establishments were not only cited for 41.50.B.2.c LAMC, but for a variety of violations including possession of altered alcoholic beverages (347(b) PC), allowing smoking inside the workplace (6404.5(B)- CA Labor Code), and Unauthorized possession of distilled spirits (25607(a) B&P). The California Board of Equalization also seized tobacco in cases where owners could not provide a bill of sale. The locations will not be disclosed due to an ongoing investigation.
Hookah lounges are not illegal. However, smoking in any establishment, whether it be cigarettes, cigars, vapor or hookah, where food and alcohol is being served is in violation of both state and local laws said Van Nuys Vice Officer Brian Frost.
For additional questions on current smoking laws contact the Los Angeles City Attorney’s Tobacco Enforcement Program at 213-978-7970 or firstname.lastname@example.org During non-business hours or on weekends, calls should be directed to 1-877-LAPD-24-7 (877-527-3247). Anyone wishing to remain anonymous should call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS (800-222-8477). Tipsters may also contact Crime Stoppers by texting to phone number 274637 (C-R-I-M-E-S on most keypads) with a cell phone. All text messages should begin with the letters “LAPD.” Tipsters may also go to LAPDOnline.org, click on "webtips" and follow the prompts