NDLEA blocks Italy, Dubai-bound drugs in Lagos
• Seizes 203,879 tramadol tabs in raids, arrests four fake employment syndicate
Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have foiled a fresh bid by drug cartels to export tramadol, 3,4-Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), commonly known as ecstasy or molly and Cannabis to Milan, Italy and Dubai, the United Arab Emirates through the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja, Lagos.
The anti-narcotics agency also seized 203, 879 tablets of various pharmaceutical opioids and illicit substances in raids across Abia, Kaduna, Yobe and Kogi State.
Spokesperson for the agency, Femi Babafemi, in a statement yesterday, said a female passenger, Odia Emiliana Efe, was arrested on Monday, May 9, at Lagos airport, while trying to board a Royal Air Moroc flight from Lagos via Casablanca to Milan, Italy with 1,000 tablets of tramadol 200mg concealed in food items.
According to him, a freight agent, Kareem Ibrahim, was arrested at Skyway Aviation Handling Company Plc (SAHCO) cargo shed of the airport, five days after, Friday, May 13, for attempting to export food items, in which were hidden blocks of Cannabis weighing 6.65kg and 24grammes of ecstasy drug, MDMA to Dubai in UAE.
“In Abia, three trucks loaded with drugs coming from Lagos and Onitsha, Anambra State was intercepted in Aba, Abia State.
“When properly searched in the presence of the owners on Wednesday, May 11, 67,100 tablets/capsules of tramadol and 12,650 ampules of pentazocine, morphine and dopamine were recovered.
“On the same day, NDLEA operatives in Kaduna arrested a notorious drug dealer, Shehu Kabiru a.k.a Dan-Zaira, wanted by the Katsina Command of the Agency for jumping bail.
“Recovered from him include 45,000 tablets of Diazepam weighing 41.5kg; 50,000 tablets of Exol, weighing 15.6kg; 1,500 tablets of Rohypnol weighing 700 grammes and 300 bottles of codeine weighing 41.5kg.
“In Yobe State, no fewer than 7,029 tablets of tramadol, D5, and Exol cough syrup as well as 1.5kg Cannabis were recovered from a drug dealer, Ibrahim Yakubu, when his hideout was raided in Unguru town on Sunday, May 8, while in Rivers State, one Chekiri Richard Obomanu was arrested at Eleme area on Wednesday, May 11, with 207.2kg of Cannabis.
“No less than 19,600 tablets of tramadol coming from Onitsha, Anambra State to Abuja were intercepted and recovered along Okene/Abuja highway on Wednesday, May 11, by NDLEA operatives in Kogi State,” he added.
ALSO, five members of a syndicate, which conducts fake recruitment into security agencies, have been arrested in coordinated operations in Zamfara, Kebbi and Bauchi States.
Leader of the gang, Yakubu Sani, was first arrested in Gusau, Zamfara State. His criminal gang issues fake NDLEA employment letters and identity cards to unsuspecting members of the public for the sum of N400, 000 per person.
Babafemi said a follow-up operation in Zuru, Kebbi State led to the arrest of another gang member, Ibrahim Isah, while three others: Dahiru Musa Limanchi, Gambo Danladi and Umar Abubakar were nabbed in Bauchi State.
He stressed that a fake NDLEA ID card; NDLEA guarantor form; Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) offer of appointment letter; Nigerian Customs special replacement form and appointment letter; Nigerian Correctional Service replacement form; credentials of some applicants; receipts and passport photographs; five sim packs and one MTN SIM card were recovered from them.
MEANWHILE, Chairman/ Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Buba Marwa (Retd), has commended officers and men of the MMIA, Abia, Kaduna, Yobe, Rivers and Kogi for the arrests and seizures.
He also acknowledged the well-conducted operations in Zamfara, Kebbi and Bauchi that nailed five members of a criminal gang scamming innocent job seekers with fake employment letters.
The NDLEA boss charged them and others across all Commands not to rest on their oars but to continue to aspire to beat previous records.