Drug valued at N14 billion seized at Lagos airport

Chidi SSamuel

National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Friday at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, intercepted 45 kg of methamphetamine worth N14 billion. The carrier of the drug, Mr Richard Ese, a 48 year old cook, concealed the substance inside a food stuff luggage prepared for export to South Africa to be flown out via kenya Airways. Ese is currently being detained by operatives of NDLEA

The suspect, from Delta State lives in Madrid, Spain and claims he was paid N1 million to deliver the drugs to an address in South Africa.

According to Ese, “I was told the bag contains African food but during search, NDLEA officers discovered methamphetamine in the luggage weighing 45kgs.”

“I worked in Madrid for ten years as a Chef and I am married with four children. The man that gave me the job met me in a drinking club.”

NDLEA commander at the Lagos airport,Ahmed Garba told news men that the suspect is assisting NDLEA  in its investigators and would be charged to court as soon as investigation is concluded.

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Muhammad Abdallah, the Chairman of the NDLEA, described the seizure as a victory over drug barons while reacting to the arrest and seizure of the drugs.

“I am very pleased with this seizure,” he said.

“It is a victory for Nigerians over drug barons but the Agency’s efforts in reducing the drug problem must be complemented by other stakeholders.

“Stiffer punishment must be meted out to those involved in methamphetamine production. On our part, the agency must continue to identify more clandestine laboratories and prosecute offenders. I want investigation to be very thorough and at the end of the day, more arrests shall be made. I want other members of the criminal gang arrested.”

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“Methamphetamine and similar drugs deserves stiffer punishment to check the proliferation of clandestine laboratories and cases of trafficking,” he continued.

“Continued production exposes our youths to the risk of being recruited by drug barons to smuggle it out of the country. It is therefore worrisome that most seizures made are even destined to countries where drug trafficking is punishable by death.”

The retired colonel and NDLEA Head, noted that locally produced methamphetamine is in high demand in Asia and Europe thus making the criminal trade highly lucrative.