Wednesday, July 28, 2010

NDLEA intercepts N4b cocaine in Lagos

National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, yesterday, said it had intercepted a container load of substance suspected to be cocaine.
The container, marked CMA CGM, ECM 78299-8, 22 GI, arrived the country via the Tin Can Island Port Apapa, Lagos, weekend, and was reportedly cleared promptly.

Vanguard learnt that the attention of plain clothed NDLEA operatives who were monitoring the clearance was aroused and they promptly trailed it to an undisclosed warehouse in Orile-Iganmu in Apapa where they demanded to know the content.

Apparently realising that the game was up, the agent was said to have called an unnamed Chinese industrialist at Ibadan informing him that men of the Nigerian Customs were demanding for additional N4million and he promptly arrived with the cash.

The Chinese man was reportedly arrested. Not wanting to go down alone, he also called his partner-in-crime in Kano State, informing him that Customs men were still demanding an additional  N1million to release the container.

The partner also flew in with the cash, and into the waiting hands of NDLEA officials.

Vanguard gathered that the two foreign industrialists were, yesterday, still briefing the anti-drug agency about their respective involvement in the illicit trafficking.

Their stash of cocaine was masterly concealed in customized plywood used as floors and packed in the  containers weighed 450.4 kgs; with  its street value put at a whopping N4billion.

Chairman of the anti-drug agency, Alhaji Ahmadu Giade, who was flanked by his Director-General, Otunba Laren Ipinmisho, told newsmen at the Shaw Road, Ikoyi, head office of the agency that the present seizure was the second largest in the annals of the agency.

Security reports

He said that operatives had received security reports about the movement of the vessel which carried the particular container and had patiently kept watch at the port.

It will be recalled that similar quantity weighing 14.2 tons was equally seized at the same port in 2006.

NDLEA chairman said: “We received intelligence report about the consignment which originated from Chile and passed though Peru, Bolivia and Antwerp in Germany to Tin Can Island Port and we kept tab on it. The drug was neatly concealed in customized floor wood in a container.  The container was cleared and taken to a private warehouse in Orile-Ignamu.”

Giade added that the clearing agent and other Nigerians involved in drug deals had been arrested to ascertain their level of involvement.

He said: “The agency and other security agencies which are also on the alert to prevent criminal acts capable of disrupting peace and stability in the country, are determined to send all drug barons out of circulation.”


Related stories: CNN's video report on the Illegal drug trade in Nigeria 

Drug traffickers stuff cocaine in roasted chicken

Pregnant woman arrested with cocaine at airport 

Two Nigerian drug traffickers excrete 160 grams of cocaine while in custody

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