WOT
FRCN HQ
Headline National News Nigeria

NDLEA raids another tramadol cartel in Lagos

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, at the weekend busted another Tramadol cartel in Lagos with the seizure of millions of opioids pills and bottles worth over N5 billion from their warehouse in Amuwo Odofin area of the state and arrest of two of the kingpins. 

This is even as anti-narcotics officers of the Agency also uncovered and dismantled a clandestine skuchies laboratory in a remote part of Sagamu, Ogun state where several equipment and various quantities of illicit substances used to mass produce the dangerous new psychoactive substance were recovered on Saturday 14th January 2023.

The NDLEA Spokesman, Femi Babafemi in a statement says, the drug cartels took the first heat on Tuesday 10th January from determined officers of the Agency who intercepted an imported consignment of Loud, a strong variant of cannabis, weighing 4, 878.72 kilograms along Awolowo road Ikoyi, Lagos.

 He said after a near fatal encounter with some suspected fake security agents escorting the drugs, the NDLEA operatives succeeded in recovering the consignment with a white truck marked BDG 548 XX conveying it. 

According to the statement, this was followed by the seizure of 121,630 pills of pharmaceutical opioids and some quantity of Molly from a dealer, Charles Okeke on Wednesday 11th January at Idumota area of Lagos Island. 

Mr Babafemi further explained that, another effort by the Agency to bring the drug cartels to their knees paid off on Friday 13th Jan when operatives tracked and located a major warehouse for pharmaceutical opioids at 17 Sir Ben Onyeka street, off Ago palace way in Amuwo Odofin area of the state while the owner of the store, Aloysius Okeke was arrested.

He said the Illicit drugs recovered from the warehouse include: 3,264,630 pills of tramadol; 3,490 bottles of codeine and 915,000 capsules of pregabalin 300 mg.

According to him, this came on the heels of the arrest of a suspect, Olarenwaju Lawal Wahab who distributed money for the cartel the same day.

The statement notes that illicit drugs recovered from his white Mercedes distribution bus include: 14,690 bottles of codeine-based syrup; 402, 500 tablets of Tramadol 250mg; 50,000 tablets of Tramadol 225mg and 210,000 capsules of pregabalin 300 mg.

The NDLEA spokesman however, said in the neighboring Ogun state, operatives in the early hours of Saturday 14th January, also discovered and dismantled a laboratory on the outskirts of Sagamu from where skuchies, a highly potent psychoactive substance made with a blend of Cannabis Sativa, Tramadol, Rohypnol, Exol-5 and industrial codeine, was being produced in large quantity, packaged and distributed in jerry cans and bottles.

He said all the equipment for the production including power generators, industrial gas cylinders, drums and kegs as well as various quantities of illicit drugs such as 214kgs cannabis; 1,440 capsules of tramadol; 480 tablets of swinol; 1,440 tablets of Rohypnol and 114 liters of industrial codeine, were recovered from the building before sealing off the premises.

Abuja operatives

Mr Babafemi similarly said that in Abuja, operatives of the FCT Command of the Agency on Thursday 12th January raided the notorious Tora bora hills in the federal capital city and recovered 350.7kgs of skunk and 794 bottles of codeine hidden under rocks.

He explained that this is even as 756kgs of C/S were recovered at Dawo village, Kaga LGA, Borno and transferred to the Agency on Friday 13th January by officers of the Nigerian Army, FOB 29 Task Force Brigade, Benishiekh, in conjunction with Hunters group, based on intelligence from the State Command of NDLEA.

The NDLEA spokesman said in Ondo state, the operatives stormed Alayere, Akure North LGA, where they arrested a suspect, Sunday Make with 275 kgs of Cannabis Sativa and Seeds, while a total of 272kgs of C/S were recovered from the building before sealing off the premises.

He said that in Katsina, 34.3kgs of cannabis were also recovered from an uncompleted building in Muduru, Mani village after which the owner, Murtala Isiya was arrested in a follow up operation.

Mr Babafemi added that in the same vein, a notorious drug dealer who is physically challenged, Abiodun Emaria, 40, was on Saturday 14th January arrested with 6.2kgs of cannabis at his hideout in Ohada village, Uhunmond, Edo State.

Reporting by Nosa Aituamen; Editing by Fany Olumoye, Abdullahi Lamino