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Customs seize N4bn cocaine, arms from South Africa

The Nigeria Customs Service, Tincan Island Command, said it intercepted cocaine, arms and ammunition worth N4.3bn.

The Comptroller General of Customs, Adewale Adeniyi, disclosed this while addressing journalists during the handing over of the seized contraband at the command on Thursday.

Adeniyi said that the seized contraband came from South Africa and Canada.

He added that the command also intercepted Colorado Indica weighing 32.5kilogram.

“Other seized contraband included 65 packets of Colarado Indica weighing 32.5kg, seized from a 40-foot container with number UACU 534833/6, imported from Canada; 17 packets of a substance weighing 16.690kg confirmed to be cocaine; 151 packets Colarado Indica weighing 107 kg; one piece Gen2 Air Soft Pistol with serial number, 471908, and an empty magazine.

“Forty nine rounds of 7.62 mm live ammunition, 197 rounds of 9mm live ammunition, precursor chemicals for the manufacture of crystal methamphetamine, eight bags of tartaric acid weighing 25kg, 100kegs of unspecified substances seized from one 40 foot container with number, MSCU 458177/0 imported from Durban, South Africa.”

“Forty packets of substances weighing 39.7kg confirmed to be Cocaine, 1026 packets weighing 688.2kg confirmed to be Colarado Indica, 2 pistols without serial numbers, one pistol with serial number, AZYSRA6YSO12101181, 3 empty magazines, 275 rounds of 5.5mm M16 Tavor live ammunition, six rounds of 9mm blank ammunition seized from one 40 foot container with serial number, Thru 796807/1 imported from Durban, South Africa were also seized,” Adeniyi said.

The CGC said that the total seized substances were 56.39kg of cocaine valued at N2.3bn, 955kg of Colorado Indica valued at N1.9bn,” all with street value of N4.3bn.”

“The summary of the weapons seized were five pistols, 445 rounds of live ammunition and several empty pistol magazines.”

Adeniyi emphasised that the collaborative efforts with the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency had proved effective in pooling resources and intelligence to safeguard the nation’s borders.

The customs boss reiterated that the seizures had brought to light a trend wherein criminal networks engaged in collaborative attempts to subvert the competency of the agencies tasked with mitigating the entry of such illicit substances.

“Our actions underscore the persistent challenges posed by sophisticated smuggling networks, emphasising the critical need for enhanced cooperation and advanced strategies to fortify the nation’s borders and preserve the safety and security of its citizens,” Adeniyi said.

He added that due to the threats and collaborative nature of criminal activities, the agency had prioritised strategic partnerships with stakeholders over the past seven months.

Earlier, the Director General of the NDLEA, Buba Marwa, while receiving the seized hard drugs, said that the handing over of the illicit drugs by the NCS was a development that spoke volumes about the hard work and diligence of security agencies tasked with securing the country’s territory.

Marwa who was represented at the event by the spokesperson for the NDLEA, Femi Babafemi, added that the seizure was a testament that just like the airports, the seaports were also secured.

“The command and other units had diligently tracked the movement of the containers up to the time of their landing in our port.

“In the spirit of inter-agency collaboration, the NDLEA never hesitated to share intelligence with the Tincan Island Command of the NCS and also requested that the command ensured the containers were pinned down for 100 per cent examination,” he said.

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