NDLEA Intercepts Cocaine Worth Over N30b At Lagos Airport

LAGOS JANUARY 31ST (NEWSRANGERS)-The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has made huge seizures of cocaine and heroin, with street values worth over N30 billion at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos.

This comes barely a week after the new Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA, Brig Gen. Mohammed Buba Marwa, vowed to dismantle drug trafficking cartels across Nigeria.

One of the seizures, 26.840 kilograms of cocaine, is the biggest single seizure from an individual in the past 15 years, The Nation gathered.

According to a top official of the agency in Abuja, “On the 27th of January 2021, at about 1320hours, during the inward clearance of Ethiopian Airline passengers at the E- arrival hall of Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, a female passenger by name Onyejegbu Ifesinachi Jennifer, 33 years, who arrived Nigeria from Sao Paulo, Brazil via Addis Ababa, was intercepted by NDLEA operatives.

“As a standard operating procedure, all passengers to and from high risk countries are always profiled using passengers’ manifest. It happened that the above named suspect was targeted. Consequently, she was taken to NDLEA office at the airport, where her bags were searched thoroughly, and in the process, whitish powdery substances were found concealed inside 16 pieces of duvet contained in her two travel bags.

“In a coordinated operation, on January 27, 2021, an NDLEA undercover agent was contacted by one Abubakar Aliyu. Guided by the operation and investigation unit, the undercover agent successfully lured the said Abubakar Aliyu into the cargo terminal of the airport where he was arrested. The suspect revealed to NDLEA operatives that another person was on his way to receive the bag based on the instruction of his sender whose name he gave as Ikechukwu Eze.

“As a result, one Emmanuel Iyke Aniebonam, who was to receive the bag was also arrested at NAHCO. During a preliminary interview by a team of investigators, Emmanuel confessed that he was instructed by one Ikechukwu to receive the consignment. Emmanuel was again set up to lure in Ikechukwu Eze but rather than showing up to get the consignment from Emmanuel, he sent another who said he was mandated to receive the consignment from him, and they agreed to meet at Ibis Royal Hotel, a few miles away from the airport.

“A follow-up operation was quickly organised to the hotel, where one Onwurah Kelvin was arrested and brought to the office. The suspect confessed during the interview that he was sent by one Ikechukwu to receive the consignment. Thereafter, the detained bag was opened in the presence of all the three suspects, whitish powdery substances were discovered neatly concealed and sewn inside five children’s duvets. Field test carried out on the exhibits proved they are cocaine weighed to be 8.400 Kilograms, with a street value of over N7billion.”

It was further learnt that on January 24, 2021 at about 12 noon, one Edosa Christopher was arrested at the passengers screening point of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos and subjected to body scan, which proved positive for hard drugs ingestion.

According to officials, “the suspect was immediately transferred to NDLEA/JBTF office and placed on excretion observation. Subsequently, he excreted a total of 68 wraps of substance, which was tested and proved positive to heroin. It also weighed 950 grams.

“During an interview, Edosa Christopher confessed to have bought the illicit substance at the cost of N800, 000 from someone he referred to as ‘Paddy’. According to the suspect, he met the said PADDY at Eagle Rock hotel around Ago Palace way in Lagos, where he lodged for a brief stay. Further investigation however revealed that the hotel does not exist anywhere in Lagos.”

“The chairman of the agency, Gen. Marwa had already commended the MMIA, Lagos commander, Ahmadu Garba and his team for their efforts and for following up on his directives at a meeting with all the commanders in charge of the 36 states, FCT and special commands.”

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