Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested two ladies and six men over attempts to import hundreds of cocaine pellets into Nigeria.
They were also about to export thousands of Tramadol 255mg tablets among other illicit drugs to Europe through the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja; Akanu Ibiam International Airport (AIIA), Enugu, and Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos.
NDLEA spokesman, Femi Babafemi, in a statement on Sunday, said the streaks of arrests and seizures began on Sunday 17th July when a 52-year-old father of three, Okwo Paul Okechukwu, was arrested upon his arrival from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia via an Ethiopian airline flight at the Abuja airport for ingesting 76 pellets of cocaine.
He said during preliminary interview, Okechukwu who hails from Enugu Ezike, Igbo Eze LGA, Enugu State, said he was into selling women’s wigs and hair attachment before veering into the drug trade.
“He has since completed excreting all the 76 wraps of the drug he swallowed while under observation at the Agency’s facility in Abuja”, he said.
Babafemi also disclosed that in the same vein, another father of three, Lawrence Chijioke, 42, was arrested at the Abuja airport same day in an operational synergy between NDLEA and Nigeria Customs Service at the NAIA.
“Chijioke, who hails from Umuahia in Umuahia LGA, Abia state was arrested during an inward clearance of Ethiopian Airline flight from Addis Ababa with 529 pellets of cocaine weighing 11.70kg concealed in his bag.
“In his statement to anti-narcotic officers, he claimed he was promised N2 million, which he planned to use to boost his business, upon successful delivery of the cocaine consignment in Abuja”, he said.
The NDLEA spokesman added that the agency’s operatives on Saturday, 23rd July arrested 29-year-old Ms. Onuorah Caritas Onyinye at the Enugu airport upon arrival on Ethiopian airline flight from Addis Ababa.
He said a search of her luggage led to the discovery of 2.192kilograms of cocaine concealed in two designer’s women handbags with false linings.
In addition, Babafemi stated that attempts by drug traffickers to export different illicit drugs through the NAHCO export shed at the Lagos airport to Europe and United Arab Emirate were also frustrated by officers and men of the Agency.
“The operatives on Monday, 18th July, intercepted some illicit substances concealed in a consolidated cargo going to Dubai, UAE. Apart from 24 parcels of Loud, a variant of cannabis, which is largely grown in the United States and Canada, other substances recovered from the cargo include a precursor for methamphetamine, BMK glycidic acid; tablets of designer drug MDMA and another five parcels of cannabis.
“No fewer than four freight agents were arrested in connection with the seizure. They include: Balogun Adesola Olamilekan; Sulaimon Kaosarat Yetunde; Benjamin Christopher Joel; and Omoniyi Ibukun Abraham;
“Also same day, Monday, 18th July, the bid by an Italy-bound passenger Tony Osas to export 10, 250 tablets of Tramadol 255mg to Europe through the Lagos airport was foiled by NDLEA operatives who intercepted him at gate B departure hall during outward clearance of passengers on a Turkish airline flight to Milan.
“During a search of his luggage, Osas who hails from Ovia South – West Local Government Area of Edo State was found with the illicit substance that weighed 5.70kg concealed inside gari, a local cassava product tucked in his black handbag”, he disclosed.