The Nigeria Customs Service Federal Operations Unit Zone C Owerri has intercepted 1,024 cartons of contraband drugs with duty paid value of N819 million.
According to the Area controller of customs FOU Zone C, Yusuf Lawal, the drugs which were Intercepted along Ofosu-Benin expressway were identified as Colcaps Medicament, illegally shipped into the country from India without NAFDAC certification.
While also displaying some other seized items like bags of foreign rice, vehicles and second-hand clothing, Controller Lawal said the men of the Nigeria Customs Service FOU Zone C are readily prepared to fight the menace of smuggling in the zone.
He advised smugglers to look for other means of livelihood and desist from economic sabotage.
The National Agency for Food and Drug, Administration and Control (NAFDAC), raided a warehouse in Lagos State, where banned and controlled pharmaceutical products were being stored.
In a statement issued on Thursday, NAFDAC’s Director General said the raid was carried out after the agency received information about nefarious activities going on in the area as well as a cartel involved in the illegal importation of drugs.
The statement said, “The Agency’s Operatives at about 1:00hrs on September 14, 2018, raided a transit warehouse at Ijora Ororo, Lagos State and discovered 187 cartons of assorted Tramadol (120mg, 200mg and 225mg respectively) and more than 49 cartons of Diazepam (a controlled drug) concealed amongst household items including but not limited to bicycle, used tyres and printers”.
According to the agency, the seized products were worth about N105,650,000 million.
The drugs have, however, been evacuated from the warehouse for further investigation.
NAFDAC advised the public to remain vigilant and not hesitate to report any suspicious activities within their environment.
Thailand’s Office of Narcotics Control Board (ONCB) announced the arrest of three Hong Kong nationals on Saturday after they were tipped off by Hong Kong police of an illicit drug smuggling from Brazil to Hong Kong via Thailand.
Officials later identified the suspects as 19-year-old Fong Yee Ting, 22-year-old Tung Wing Yan, and 24-year-old Yau Kit Long, whose suitcases were found to have carried a total of 12.3 kilogrammes of cocaine.
All three were charged with smuggling and possessing illegal drugs.
The suspects said they were hired by a female Hong Kong national, known only by the name “Ming”, to smuggle the illicit drugs into Thailand for 8,000 Hong Kong dollar ($1,026.43) each and were supposed to meet her at a hotel in Bangkok’s downtown, Ming reportedly fled.
An investigation is underway in an effort to identify the illegal drug smuggling ring, said the ONCB secretary-general in a press release.
Pharmacist Council of Nigeria says its working with relevant agencies and organs of government to prosecute arrested patent medicine dealers who broke its seal during its last enforcement exercise in Enugu State.
PCN had in April 2017 sealed off 264 illegal pharmacies and medicine stores for falling short of operations standards
The organisation’s Deputy Director enforcement, Stephen Esumobi said some of the premises do not have the right facilities in place to handle the categories of medicine stock.
“The owner of this premises was arrested because he was operating illegally and he refused to update his facilities to ensure that the storage of the drugs is in line with manufacturers specifications – Most of the drugs have not met minimum requirements for safety, quality and efficacy because of poor handling. Some of these drugs when they are not properly handled, could endanger public health”
“The owner broke the seal and continued operation as at before. Pharmacists Council of Nigeria is not going to allow that. We are going to ensure that those who broke our seal in Enugu state are arrested and prosecuted”
He also noted that the agency is committed to riding the nation of illegal drugs and promoting health.
Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have aborted an attempt by suspected drug syndicate to smuggle 24.5kg of heroin concealed inside carpets into Nigeria. The consignment described in the airway bill as Pakistani hand-knotted new woollen carpets originated from Lahore, Pakistan. It left Karachi airport in an Emirate flight as unaccompanied cargo and taken to Nigeria Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) Shed, at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos.
The estimated value of the drug is N294 million. It is the first discovery of drug inside carpets in the country.
The NDLEA airport Commander, Hamza Umar said the consignment was examined by the Agency when it was abandoned by the importers.
“The suspicious cargo was monitored by undercover operatives for a week after it arrived. We decided to conduct the search when nobody came to claim it. In all, there were twelve pieces of carpets but only six contained heroin. The heroin was prepared into tiny bits inside plastic hollow treads and weaved in a way that makes it difficult to detect unless it is unfastened” Mr Hamza said.
He added that the information on the airway bill was found to be incorrect by investigators.
The Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA, Ahmadu Giade who described the seizure as breath-taking promised to unveil the importers.
“The drug syndicate did their best concealing the drug but it was not good enough to go undetected. If drug barons will not lack concealment methods, we also will not be tired in detecting narcotics. This seizure is unique because it is the least place anyone will go to in search for narcotics. We shall continue with investigation until those behind the illegal shipment are brought to book” Mr Giade said.