Brazil-based Nigerian, Pascal Ekene Okolo. Photo: Nosa Aituamen
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has thwarted fresh attempts by Brazil-based drug cartels to smuggle Cocaine into Nigeria in teabags.
NDLEA Director, Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi said in a statement on Sunday that the latest attempts were foiled at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja, and Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos.
Mr Babafemi said at least four traffickers involved in the attempts to import and export illicit drugs through the country last week, were now in the custody of the Agency.
According to him, one of the suspects is 33-year-old Pascal Ekene Okolo, who was arrested during an inward clearance of a Qatar Airways flight from Sao Paulo via Doha at the arrival hall of the NAIA on Sunday April 17.
Okolo, who claimed to be in the wine business in Brazil, was arrested with a traveling bag containing different medicinal tea bags, which were used to conceal 4.1kilograms of cocaine.
The same day, a Canada-based Nigerian, Anigo Christian Godspower, was intercepted at the D-Arrival Hall of the MMIA, Ikeja, during an inward clearance of passengers on Qatar Airways from Sao Paolo via Doha to Lagos.
When his luggage was searched, two blocks of Cocaine with a total weight of 2.10kg were discovered.
The 52-year-old Anigo claimed he operated an unregistered Bureau De Change business before delving into the illicit drug trade.
An attempt by another cartel to export 950grams of Heroin concealed in the soles of a lady’s footwear through the MMIA cargo shed was also foiled by anti-narcotic officers, who have so far arrested two suspects linked to the crime.
Those arrested between April 16 and 17 in connection with an attempt to export the drug to Monrovia, Liberia, include Idokoja Solomon Chukwurah and Patrick John Tochukwu.
Writing by Nosa Aituamen; Editing by Abdullahi Lamino and Tony Okerafor