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Drug Baron’s Mansion Forfeited To FG In NDLEA’s Crackdown

In a major victory against drug trafficking, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has successfully secured the forfeiture of a multi-million-naira mansion in Victoria Garden City (VGC) estate, Lekki, Lagos.

This luxurious property was exposed as a clandestine laboratory for the production of methamphetamine, operated by the convicted drug baron, Okenwa Chris Nzewi.

Okenwa, along with his associate Sunny Okeh Ukah, was apprehended on July 30, 2022, leading to their subsequent arraignment on four counts at the Federal High Court in Lagos under charge number FHC/L/527C/2022.

 On July 17, 2023, both individuals pleaded guilty and were sentenced to four and three years in prison, respectively, with options of fines amounting to N4 million and N3 million.

Additionally, they were ordered to perform community service for four and three weeks, respectively. Okenwa’s vehicle, marked EKY 496 DJ, was also seized by the authorities.

Femi Babafemi, the NDLEA Director of Media and Advocacy, disclosed on Sunday, December 17, that the agency pursued a civil forfeiture charge against the mansion at the Federal High Court in Lagos.

An interim forfeiture order, initially granted on December 6, lapsed, paving the way for the final forfeiture on December 7, 2023.

Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the NDLEA, emphasized the importance of sustaining pressure on drug cartels, particularly as the yuletide season approaches.

He urged anti-narcotics officers to maintain a high offensive tempo against drug-related activities while continuing efforts in drug demand reduction.

In a related operation, NDLEA arrested four suspects in Cross River state on December 11.

The suspects, identified as Ezekiel Monday Thompson (56), Hezekiah Ime (20), Nsikak Okon Jonah (39), and Chidi Kalu (44), were found in possession of 121kg of cannabis and 5.1 grams of methamphetamine.

 The successful operations mark a significant stride in NDLEA’s commitment to curbing drug trafficking and ensuring that criminals do not profit from their illicit activities.

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