In a recent string of successful operations, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has unveiled a series of international drug busts and seizures, highlighting the ongoing battle against drug trafficking in Nigeria.
Among the notable arrests, a Madrid-based ‘businessman,’ Sherif Egbo Ally, was apprehended at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja while attempting to board an Air France flight to Paris, France.
On the 14th of October, Egbo was taken into custody after a body scanner revealed that he had ingested illicit drugs.
Subsequent observations in the Agency’s exhibit recovery room led to the astonishing discovery that he had excreted 93 pellets of heroin, with a total weight of 2.222 kilograms.
The suspect claimed to be employed at a chicken hatchery farm in Madrid, Spain, while also engaging in drug trafficking.
In another significant operation at the NAHCO imports shed of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport in Lagos on the 16th of October, NDLEA operatives seized a consignment of 10 cartons containing 500,000 pills of tramadol 225mg, branded as tapentadol.
This cargo, shipped from India through Qatar Airways, was supposedly intended as transit cargo to Monrovia, Liberia. However, a joint effort between the NDLEA and its Liberian counterparts exposed the illicit shipment.
Additionally, an attempted drug export to Muscat, Oman, via Qatar Airways was thwarted by NDLEA officers.
The passenger, Ngene Chinecherem Oscar, was arrested, and the officers seized 11.100 kilograms of skunk and 600 grams of tramadol concealed within foodstuffs at the Lagos airport.
Further investigations by NDLEA officers, particularly those of the Directorate of Operations and General Investigations (DOGI) attached to courier companies, led to the interception of 1 kilogram of methamphetamine concealed in containers of body cream, destined for New Zealand.
Another consignment, containing 2.5 kilograms of cocaine and phenacetin hidden in the walls of a carton, was discovered en route to Saudi Arabia.
Two more seizures took place on the 18th of October, including 112 grams of Dimethyl Sulfone and 583 grams of cocaine and phenacetin, hidden in a courier company shipment.
In Imo State, operatives discovered an isolated Mercedes Benz container truck along the Owerri – Onitsha expressway.
A search of the abandoned truck revealed 168 bags of skunk, weighing a total of 1,854 kilograms. Similar seizures were made in Edo state, including 1,381.3 kilograms of the same substance in various interdiction operations.
Kano state saw the arrest of an ex-convict, Aminu Suleiman, along with other suspects, for their involvement in the trafficking of cannabis. In Borno state, another suspect, Sani Mohammed, was arrested with 182 kilograms of cannabis.
Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd), commended the diligent efforts of the officers and men across various commands and called for increased vigilance, especially during the year-end season when criminal networks become increasingly desperate to make money through any means possible.
The recent successes in intercepting drug traffickers demonstrate the NDLEA’s ongoing commitment to combating drug-related crimes within and beyond Nigeria.
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