NDLEA arrests three grandpas, Nigerien over 52kgs cocaine, skunk seized in Lagos, Kwara, Plateau
• Intercepts Europe-bound opioids, concealed meth, courier firms
Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested three grandfathers and a Nigerien in connection with the seizure of over 52.252 kilogrammes of cocaine, Methamphetamine, and Skunk as well as 32, 590 pills of opioids in Lagos, Kwara, Plateau, Sokoto and two courier companies.
The anti-drug agency on Saturday, February 18, also arrested a suspect, Onyebi Benjamin Chimaobi, who frequents Cameroun, Ethiopia, Uganda and has been on NDLEA’s watchlist at Victory Estate, Iba, Ojo area of Lagos in connection with the seizure of a 19.70kgs cocaine abandoned on an Ethiopian airline flight that arrived Lagos airport on Thursday, February 9.
Spokesperson for the agency, Femi Babafemi, in a statement, yesterday, said Chimaobi had travelled to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to pick the consignment, which he claimed was handed over to him in a black backpack bag on the plane in Addis Ababa, but failed to disembark with it on arrival in Lagos.
While the Agency continues to investigate the flight crew members, relevant intelligence and investigative tools were deployed to identify the passenger who brought the consignment to Nigeria, as a result of which Chimaobi was eventually unravelled and traced to Victory estate, Iba, where he was arrested.
In the same vein, operatives on Thursday, February 23, intercepted an intending passenger on Turkish Airline flight to Torino via Milan, Italy at the Departure Hall of the Lagos airport, Obazee Timothy Eguagie, with various quantities of opioids.
The consignment consisting a total of 22, 840 tablets of tramadol 225mg weighing 10.60 kg; 1000 tablets of tramadol 200mg with a gross weight of 600 grammes; 2, 300 capsules of tramadol 100mg, weighing 800 grammes and 60 tablets of Rohypnol 1mg, weighing 19 grammes were concealed inside cloths and wrapped with black tapes.
The following day, Friday, February 24, NDLEA operatives attached to Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO), import shed of the airport intercepted eight cartons of shoes coming from Los Angeles, United States of America. A diligent examination of the cargo however showed that the shoes were used to conceal a total of 37 parcels of Loud variant of Cannabis sativa with a gross weight of 20.10 kilogrammes.
A 63-year-old grandfather, Balogun Akinlabi Abideen, hired as a freight agent to clear the illicit consignment has already been arrested.
Two other sexagenarians arrested in connection with drug trafficking include Butven Siman, 62, who was nabbed with 5.5kgs skunk on Friday, February 17 at Timbol village, Langtang South Local Council, Plateau State, as well as 65-year-old Musa Shuaib who was arrested with a kilogramme of Cannabis sativa on Thursday, February 23, in Adewole area of Ilorin, the Kwara State capital.
At two major courier companies in Lagos, a total of 4.292 kilogrammes of psychoactive drugs, including methamphetamine, tramadol, lexaton, and swindon concealed in walls of cartons, picture frames, bathing soap packs and bedspreads were recovered from parcels going to United Kingdom, New Zealand and Australia by officers of the NDLEA Directorate of Operations and General Investigation (DOGI), attached to the logistics firms.
In Sokoto State, NDLEA operatives at the Illela land border on Tuesday, February 21, intercepted a Nigerien, Bashar Abdu of Kwanni, Niger Republic with 1.460kgs of skunk wrapped around his private part, while in Kaduna, a suspect, Mohammed Garba (a.k.a Alfazazi), was arrested with 6,390 tablets of tramadol 225mg, weighing 3.4kgs on Thursday, February 23, along Abuja-Kaduna express road.
Reacting, chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Buba Marwa (Retd), commended officers and men of Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), DOGI, Plateau, Sokoto, Kaduna and Kwara Commands for the arrests and seizures.
He noted that their efforts and those of their compatriots across the country have in no small measure reduced access to and availability of illicit substances in Nigerian communities and charged them to remain vigilant at all times.