The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), Benue State Command has arrested a man with a fabricated high calibre G3 rifle and 78 rounds of live ammunition.
The Chairman, NDLEA, retired Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa, who disclosed this during a news conference in Abuja on Thursday said that the suspect would be handed over to appropriate authority for further investigation.
Marwa said that the checkpoint was to stop and search vehicles for drugs, noting that NDLEA arrested him when other criminal items such as heavy weapons as in this instance were found.
Marwa said that the suspect was arrested on Aug. 4 in a bus enroute Onitsha to Jos where the vehicle was flagged down at Aliade checkpoint for search.
“In the process, an iron box completely welded end to end was found in the vehicle, and when the passengers were questioned to know the owner, the suspect, Celestine Christian, accepted ownership.
“When the steel box was taken to the Benue State Command along with the suspect, an electric filing machine was used to cut it open.
“A fabricated high calibre G3 rifle was discovered with 78 rounds of live ammunition and five empty shells of same calibre were discovered” he said.
Marwa noted that people now manufacture weapons on their own, thereby selling to bandits, kidnappers and criminal gangs among others.
He said that it was important for this to be investigated by the appropriate agencies of the government, assuring that due sanctions would follow as it might not be the only manufactured weapons.
While interrogating the suspect, Christian claimed he had talent in making local guns, adding that he was hoping to get a job in the military with it.
Christian said that he was aware it was a crime to manufacture weapon without permit in Nigeria and that he was looking forward to have one.
He said that he had met a soldier who told him to make a sample and told him he could get a government job with his talent.
According to him, “I do not have permit but I was looking forward to getting one with my talent. They will not believe I can do this that is why I need to convince them with a sample.”
In the same vein, Marwa said that three bandits armed with AK 47 rifles were also intercepted by officers on patrol in Malumfashi Local Government Area of Katsina State.
He said that the suspects were from Igabi Local Government Area of Kaduna State enroute Kankara Local Government Area in Katsina State for a devilish assignment.
He noted that a car, three AK 47 rifles with magazines and ammunition, different types of charms, rings, cash and other items, were recovered from them.
“However, I also asked that Christian be transferred to Abuja because of the calibre of weapon found with him, which he claims he manufactures.
“For us at NDLEA, we will continue to do our best with our highly dedicated officers and men to cut off accessibility to illicit drugs by criminal gangs by blocking the trafficking of these psychoactive and psychotropic substances.
“In doing this, we will not shy away from complementing the efforts of other security agencies, especially our armed forces in our collective bid to restore security and maintain law and order in all parts of the country,” he said.