The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has said that its operatives at some courier firms in Lagos thwarted crooked attempts by drug syndicates to export illicit substances including various quantities of methamphetamine and opioids concealed in hems of new jeans trousers, dolls, buttons, local soap and tins of milo beverage to Europe, United Arab Emirates and Asia.
The anti-narcotics agency made this known on Sunday in a statement issued by its Director, Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi.
The agency further said that its operatives arrested a drug kingpin in a hotel in Lagos State, recovered eight tons of cannabis, 8,000 bottles of codeine in Edo, Delta, Bauchi, Kaduna, Gombe, Kogi states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) raids.
Babafemi stated that some of the consignments intercepted by the NDLEA operatives of the Directorate of Operations and General Investigation (DOGI), at courier houses in Lagos include 225mg of tramadol concealed in hems of new jeans trousers heading to Cyprus and shipment of cannabis sativa hidden in heads of dolls going to Dubai, UAE.
Others are of 225mg sachets of tramadol buried in tins of milo beverage going to UAE and another set of same drug hidden in local soap also going to UAE, as well as a consignment of methamphetamine concealed in buttons heading to Hong Kong.
He said that a shipment of another illicit substance coming from Florida, USA was also intercepted at a courier firm while the recipient, identified as Daniel Ogi, was tracked by the operatives and arrested at 5 Akeem Shittu street, Ajao Estate, Lagos on November 24.
“Operatives in Lagos on Friday 1st December also arrested a drug kingpin, Okechukwu Ogala, 56, who specialises in exploiting and recruiting young citizens to export meth to Asian countries.
“He was arrested at Blue Moon Hotel in Okota area of Lagos with 60 wraps of methamphetamine weighing 1.009 kilograms,” Babafemi added.
According to the statement, in another operation in Lagos, operatives on Friday recovered 393kgs of cannabis in a shop at Akala, Mushin while a suspect, Justin Enuonye, who deals in Canadian Loud was arrested by the police at Victoria Island and transferred to Lagos Command of NDLEA on with 154 parcels weighing 92kgs.
A team of NDLEA operatives also intercepted a vehicle at Oyingbo area of Lagos and recovered 108kgs of cannabis from it, while 675 kilograms of the same substance were recovered from the store of a wanted dealer, Wahab Olota at Adedoja area of Mushin, Lagos.
Similarly, in Edo State, NDLEA operatives on November 29, stormed the Ujiogba forest in Esan West Local Government Area of the state where they recovered 5,988 kilograms of cannabis already processed and ready for distribution while a 22-year-old Mson Bunde, popularly known as Tete Peter Joseph, found in a hut on the cannabis farm was arrested.
The NDLEA spokesperson added that “No less than 120,000 capsules of tramadol concealed in new sound systems packed in a Jos, Plateau state-bound bus were seized by NDLEA officers acting on intelligence along Onitsha-Awka road, Anambra state on November 27.
“While 123 blocks of cannabis weighing 73kgs were recovered from a suspect, Abdullahi Muhammad Bello along Gombe-Bauchi road, Gombe state on November 29, operatives in Abuja seized 168 blocks of same psychoactive substance with a total weight of 101kgs from the store of a fleeing drug dealer in Kabusa area of the FCT.
“No fewer than 8,000 bottles of codeine syrup were recovered by NDLEA operatives on Friday 1st December when they intercepted a vehicle transporting the opioid along Abuja- Kaduna road, with the driver, Shamsu Isiyaku and his conductor, Muhammad Maina arrested.
“Same day, operatives also arrested Ernest Esechie, 30, with 44.4 kilograms of compressed cannabis sativa along Gwantu- Sanga road, Kaduna. In Kogi, NDLEA officers arrested Ahmad Umar, 18, with 46.4kgs cannabis at a checkpoint in Kabba, while Jamilu Zakari, 32, was nabbed at Kofar Idi, Kandahar, Bauchi town, Bauchi state with 125 blocks of same substance that weighed 146kgs.”