Brazil Returnee Pretends Illness to Avoid Arrest, Excretes 60 Cocaine Wraps in Custody

In a series of significant drug interdiction operations, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has demonstrated a heightened vigilance in combating drug trafficking and abuse across Nigeria. The agency has successfully conducted multiple arrests and seizures, underscoring its commitment to thwarting the illegal drug trade.

One notable arrest was that of Udechukwu Ekene Theophilus, apprehended at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos. Theophilus, a Brazilian returnee, was caught with 60 big wraps of cocaine ingested in his body. Despite initial resistance to a body scan, Theophilus eventually excreted all 60 wraps, totaling 1.279 kilograms, after being placed under observation by NDLEA officials. His confession revealed a broader network of drug trafficking, including the handover of part of his consignment to an associate in Addis Ababa.

In a separate but equally significant operation, NDLEA operatives recovered 599,900 tramadol pills, amounting to 385.40kg, from an overstayed cargo at the Lagos airport. These pills arrived in two batches from Karachi, Pakistan, on KLM Royal Dutch Airline flights and were under surveillance since their arrival between July and August 2023.

The NDLEA’s reach extended beyond Lagos, with multiple seizures and arrests across several states. In Jigawa State, Sani Audu was arrested with 111.3kg of cannabis, while a large seizure of 822 kilograms of cannabis sativa was made in a fuel station at Ashipa community, Badagry-Seme road. In Yobe state, two suspects were apprehended with 50kg of cannabis at Damaturu motor park. Meanwhile, in Kogi state, two individuals were caught with 318 compressed blocks of cannabis weighing 190.8kg.

Kano state saw the arrest of Shamwilu Idris with 271kg of cannabis and another suspect with 600 bottles of codeine-based syrup. Additionally, police in Kano transferred 886kg of cannabis to NDLEA custody.

The agency’s effectiveness was further demonstrated by the interception of a truck in Gombe state, leading to the recovery of 73kg of cannabis, along with thousands of tramadol and diazepam tablets. In Plateau state, Aminu Ubanta was nabbed with over 5kg of cannabis.

Adding to the list of high-profile cases, NDLEA declared former beauty queen, Ms. Aderinoye Queen Christmas, wanted for dealing in illicit substances. This followed a raid at her Lekki residence, where various drugs and paraphernalia were recovered.

In another strategic operation, two members of an international drug trafficking syndicate were arrested in Ogun state, foiling an attempt to smuggle drugs to Qatar.

The NDLEA’s commitment to its mission is further evidenced by its ongoing War Against Drug Abuse (WADA) advocacy campaign. This initiative includes sensitization lectures across various educational institutions and communities, aiming to strike a balance between drug supply and demand reduction activities.

NDLEA Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), lauded the efforts of the officers in these successful operations and emphasized the agency’s determination to continue its robust approach against drug trafficking and abuse nationwide.

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