Defence & Security

Airport cleaner who allegedly leads drug syndicate nabbed

By Paul Michael

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested a cleaner at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Ikeja Lagos, who allegedly leads a drug syndicate there.

The suspect, Sunday Ohiagu, was nabbed following the arrest of an intending passenger, Osita Jacob Obinna, on a flight to Dubai, UAE, spokesperson for the anti-narcotics agency, Femi Babafemi said on Sunday.

Osita was said to have been arrested with two bags containing eight blocks of cannabis sativa weighing 4.25kg concealed in cassava product (garri) and crayfish.

Babafemi said one other member of the airport syndicate who works with Ohiagu has also been arrested while operatives are after another suspect.

“Investigations revealed that a Dubai-based drug dealer recruited Obinna, a 42-year-old native of Oyi Local Government Area, Anambra State to traffic the drugs and equally contracted Ohiagu, a 34-year-old airport cleaner from Orlu West Local Government Area of Imo State to create access for the unhindered passage of the trafficker.

“The drug syndicate bust, which is the first drug arrest at the new terminal of the MMIA comes on the heels of the seizure of a consignment of bottles of viju and fearless energy drinks used to conceal skunk for export to Dubai, UAE through the NAHCO export shed on Monday 15th Aug. A freight agent has already been arrested in connection with the seizure,” the spokesperson said.

In a similar development, attempt by a syndicate to export illicit drugs through the Lagos airport was foiled during an outward clearance of passengers on Ethiopian Airline to Oman via Addis Ababa.

“A suspect Jonah Chukwuemeka was arrested with a total of 1,995 Tramadol tablets with a gross weight of 900 grams hidden in locust beans in his luggage. The bag containing the illicit substance was handed over to him at the airport by one Olagunju Abbas who was promptly arrested,” Babafemi said.

Read Also: 3 in court for trafficking newborn twins, killing mother

He further disclosed that packs of Tramadol 225mg containing 119,500 capsules were Thursday 25th August transferred to NDLEA by the Nigeria Customs, cargo wing of MMIA, saying the consignment had come in through Ethiopian Airline from Pakistan.

Meanwhile, NDLEA operatives at the weekend raided a car shop, Bolak Motors at Ewenla bus stop, Oshodi where bags of 615.2kg cannabis were recovered along with nine vehicles.

“Efforts are ongoing to track the car dealer, Alhaji Ismail who is currently at large,” Babafemi added.

He further stated, “No fewer than eight suspects were arrested and bags of illicit drugs seized from them when Akerele area of Agege, Shogunle and Mafoluku areas of Oshodi, Fagba area of Ogba, Ipodo area of Ikeja and Iyana Ipaja park were raided in the state.

“In Yobe state, two suspected fake security agents taking 14kg cannabis to Maiduguri, Borno state were intercepted along Potiskum- Damaturu road. While Adetula Olarenwaju was arrested with four blocks of the substance on Thursday 25th August on his way from Lagos, Sadiq Garba returning from Gombe was nabbed with 22 blocks of the substance on Saturday 27th August.

“In Edo, Abu Segun Sunday was arrested with 48.4kg cannabis at Idk quarter, Ibilo, while Rosemary Afekhuai was caught with 1,130 tramadol caps, among others at Oluma quarters, Otuo, Owan East LGA.

“In Delta, Mustapha Isah, was arrested at Oko Market with 9, 800 Tramadol caps weighing 6.4kg while NDLEA operatives in Kaduna also nabbed Chinedu Onnuka, at Narayi Kaduna with 33,000 tablets of Bromazepam.”

While commending men and officers of the agency for the seizure and arrest, Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig-Gen Mohamed Buba Marwa (Rtd), charged them not to rest on their oars.

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