NDLEA arrests 3 top drug cartel members

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have arrested three suspected drug cartel members for alleged trafficking of 51.90kg heroin across Nigeria, South Africa, Mozambique, Europe and America.

Spokesman for the Agency, Mr Babafemi Femi said the exhibit was recovered from members of the drug cartel in recent operation, two months after the NDLEA declared them wanted.

The Agency has also secured interim forfeiture court order on hotel, mansions, vehicles and funds traced to members of the syndicate after arresting four of them, a manhunt was also launched for others who went underground.

The effort to track down the organized criminal organization, however paid off on Friday 19th April when two of the wanted kingpins: Onyinyechi Irene Igbokwuputa and Frankline Uzochukwu were arrested in Lagos and Awka, Anambra State respectively.

Another wanted member of the syndicate, Osita Emmanuel Obinna was equally nabbed in Lagos.

The operation led to the seizure of the single largest consignment of heroin began 10th February 2024 at the SAHCO Import Shed of the airport’s Cargo Terminal at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA Ikeja Lagos.

The consignment was concealed in 15 cartons of 2300-watt metal cutting machines, with no less than 45 blocks of the illicit substance.

It weighed 49.70kg recovered from the equipment, while additional 2.2kg was seized at the syndicate’s warehouse in Ayobo area of Lagos.

Similarly, NDLEA also thwarted attempt by a suspect, Iheakara Ifeanyichukwu Festus to export a drug consignment through the terminal 2 of the Lagos airport to Muscat, Oman via Ethiopian airline flight on Thursday 18th.

20 big parcels of cannabis weighing 9.80kg concealed in his bag, were discovered when the luggage was searched, according to the NDLEA statement.

The suspect who lives in Muscat, Oman and returned to Nigeria in 1st April, confessed to NDLEA that .he was hired to courier the drug with an agreement to get paid N1,200,000 upon successful delivery in Oman.

At Girei on his way to Mubi area in Adamawa State, NDLEA agents mopped up 1,250,000 pills of opioids weighing 450kg and intercepted a Peugeot car driven by Dahiru Mohammed.

The operatives had earlier intercepted along Ngurore -Yola road a J5 bus marked AAA790XV loaded with motor spare parts from Onitsha, Anambra State.

NDLEA said a follow up operation led to the arrest of the recipient, Jairus Nwanchor at Jambutu motor park.

The statement further said Yenogoa, Owerri, Ondo and Ondo States burst criminal hideouts, recovered drugs and arrested some illicit drugs traffickers in the previous week.

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