Sunday, December 4, 2022

NDLEA busts cocaine warehouse in Lagos, seizes N193b worth of crack

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have busted a cocaine warehouse in Lagos State, seizing N193 billion worth of crack. 

NDLEA’s spokesman Femi Babafemi described the development as one of “the biggest singular cocaine seizures” in the agency’s history.

He said the officials busted the “warehouse in a secluded estate in Ikorodu area of Lagos where 1.8 tons (1,855 kilograms) of the illicit drug worth more than two hundred and seventy-eight million two hundred and fifty thousand dollars ($278, 250,000) equivalent of about one hundred and ninety-four billion, seven hundred and seventy-five million (N194, 775,000,000) naira in street value were seized”.

“At least, four drug barons including a Jamaican and the warehouse manager have been arrested in the well coordinated and intelligence-led operation that lasted two days across different locations in Lagos State,” Babafemi added in a statement Monday.

“Kingpins of the cocaine cartel in custody include Messrs Soji Jibril, 69, an indigene of Ibadan, Oyo State; Emmanuel Chukwu, 65, who hails from Ekwulobia, Anambra State; Wasiu Akinade, 53, from Ibadan, Oyo State; Sunday Oguntelure, 53, from Okitipupa, Ondo State, and Kelvin Smith, 42, a native of Kingston, Jamaica.

“They are all members of an international drug syndicate that the Agency has been trailing since 2018.”

The warehouse, located at NO. 6 Olukuola Crescent, Solebo Estate, Ikorodu, was raided on Sunday and the barons were arrested in their hideouts in different parts of Lagos, the agency said.

“Preliminary investigation reveals the class A drugs were warehoused in the residential estate from where the cartel was trying to sell them to buyers in Europe, Asia, and other parts of the world,” the spokesman noted. “They were stored in 10 travel bags and 13 drums.”

The feat, which was achieved after extensive investigation with American Drug Enforcement Administration, (US-DEA), drew commendation from the NDLEA Chairman/Chief Executive Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa, he said.

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