Daiso California will pay fines totaling $350,000 for the sale of children's products containing lead and other potentially harmful compounds, District Attorney Jeff Rosen announced Friday.
The fine is the result of a lawsuit brought by the District Attorney’s Offices of Santa Clara and Alameda counties. The settlement, signed by Alameda County Presiding Judge C. Don Clay, pertains to Daiso’s retail stores located in San Jose, Daly City and Newark. Daiso also operates a store in Mountain View at 550 Showers Dr.
The products in question were sold in Daiso stores in 2008 and 2009 before it was discovered that they might violate California consumer protection laws. Daiso has cooperated fully with both local prosecutors and the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission to bring their consumer products into compliance with state and federal regulations, according to Rosen.
The lawsuit alleged that the company sold consumer products, including toys and children’s products, made of materials that contain lead, lead compounds and/or certain phthalate compounds—used by manufacturers to make plastic more flexible and to add pleasant fragrances to consumer goods—without first providing clear and reasonable warnings in violation of Proposition 65.
The lawsuit also alleged that the company violated AB 1108 by selling toys or child care articles containing certain phthalate compounds exceeding 0.1 percent regardless of whether phthalate warnings were given or not.
Although there have not been any known illnesses or injuries caused by any of the Daiso products in question, current research suggests there are increased medical risks for children exposed to excess levels of phthalates and lead.
The civil penalties from the judgment will be used to provide money to support local enforcement of California consumer protection laws and for the state Safe Water and Toxic Enforcement Fund.
“The Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office is committed to protecting California consumers from potentially harmful products in the market place,” Rosen said in a press release.