Ex-convict returning from Brazilian prison arrested for importing cocaine

0
56
Advertisements

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have intercepted 24 parcels of cocaine concealed in 12 tyres of lawnmowers imported into the country through the Port Harcourt International Airport.

The items were brought to Nigeria by a Brazilian returnee, Amaechi Okechukwu, who just finished serving his jail term for drug trafficking in Brazil.

A statement on Sunday by the NDLEA Director of Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, said the 45-year-old ex-convict from Idemili South LGA, Anambra State, was arrested at the Port Harcourt airport on Saturday, May 7, upon arrival from Brazil via Doha onboard a Qatar airline flight QR1433.

According to him, preliminary investigations revealed that Okechukwu, who was arrested and convicted in Brazil for drug offences, completed his jail sentence in March 2022, after which he decided to return to Nigeria with three new lawnmowers where he concealed 24 parcels of cocaine weighing 4.56kg.

Babafemi said, “Curiously, each parcel concealed in the tyres of the three lawnmowers bears some unique inscriptions, which are believed to be means of identification of the owners of the drug. The two parcels in one of the tyres of the first lawnmower bear ‘O Lord’ and ‘Have Mercy’. The parcels in one of the tyres of the second mower bear the inscription, ‘In God’ and ‘We Trust’, while the third mower has ‘Ijioma’ and ‘186.6’ inscribed on the two parcels hidden in one of its tyres.”

Okechukwu claimed one of his church members gave him the lawnmowers to deliver to his brother in Port Harcourt.

In other operations across Zamfara, Kogi, Rivers, Kaduna and Kano states, no fewer than 37, 876 tablets of pharmaceutical opioids, especially tramadol; 10,884 bottles of codeine and 825.016 kilogrammes of cannabis sativa, were recovered during raids in the past week.

Meanwhile, in Zamfara State, a Mercedes Benz truck from Onitsha to Sokoto was intercepted in the Tsafe area on Friday, May 20.

Apart from the driver and his assistant who were arrested, three other persons: Alex Chukwuemeka, 37; Ignatius Odikpo, 47; and Andrew Chijokwe, 47, who were owners of the drug exhibits, were arrested in a follow-up operation at a hotel in Gusau while waiting to receive the consignment for possible movement to Sokoto.

Items seized from them included 9,900 bottles of codeine, 599.3kg cannabis and 15,889 tablets of other opioids.

In Kogi State, a fake security agent, Richard Agada, was arrested on Wednesday, May 18, while reportedly conveying 10 bags of cannabis sativa weighing 116.8kg in a white Nissan van.

The Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohammed Marwa (retd.), charged all commands of the agency to remain on the offensive against drug cartels as they take advocacy messages to communities and schools.

Leave a comment