Operatives of the Western Marine Command, Nigeria Customs Service, Lagos, have seized contraband consisting of hard drugs, foreign rice and petrol worth N1.2bn.
The Acting Customs Area Controller, Western Marine Command, Deputy Controller, Enonche Ochiba, who disclosed this at a media briefing in Apapa, on Friday, said the feat was recorded between July and September 2021.
Ochiba said customs men attached to the Coastal and Harbour Patrol along Kuramo Beach seized 232 sacks of marijuana weighing 10,672 kilogrammes and estimated at over N1bn.
He said, “On Friday, August 13, 2021, the officers/men of Coastal and Harbour Patrol together with the Controller Surveillance/Monitoring while on patrol along Kuramo Beach on the high sea accosted, intercepted and arrested sacks suspected to be cannabis sativa (marijuana). The smugglers dived into the sea on sighting the patrol team.
“The goods were brought to the WMC. Upon physical examination and counting, it was found to be 232 sacks of marijuana with a street value of N1,120,560,000.00 only.”
He said on Thursday, September 9, 2021, around 10.30pm, the operatives of the command, while on stop-and-search operations along the waterways at Pashi, Yekeme area, discovered some powdered substances suspected to be heroin concealed in a carton of noodles.
He added, “One suspect in connection with the seizure was arrested. The powder was later sent for laboratory test analysis and it was certified to be heroine weighing a total of 1.52Kg valued at N40, 860,841.02k only.
“Also, on Wednesday, September 15, 2021, about 12am, a team of patrol while on credible intelligence along Abumbum-Ojo waterways, accosted and intercepted sacks suspected to contain drugs.
“The sacks were evacuated to the base and upon physical examination, they were found to contain drugs that had expired on April 27, 2017, with the total value of N62,252,794.00 only.”
The total Duty Paid Value (DPV) of the seizures under review is N1,265,830,809.04,” describing the seizures as unprecedented.
He warned that the command would not relent on its efforts until smugglers were out of business, adding that, “we will continue to track, arrest and prosecute them in accordance with the extant laws.”