• Thursday, April 18, 2024
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BusinessDay

NDLEA nabs largest heroin haul at Lagos Airport, arrests international drug ring

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In a major operation, the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has intercepted the largest heroin consignment ever seized at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) in Lagos. The operation, which culminated in the arrest of four members of an international drug trafficking ring, also netted 51.90 kilograms of the illicit substance.

NDLEA Chairman, Buba Marwa, announced the feat at a press briefing in Lagos on Tuesday, highlighting the significance of the seizure. “This is the single largest seizure of heroin at the Lagos airport in the history of the NDLEA,” he declared.

Marwa revealed that the drug consignment, concealed within 15 cartons of seemingly innocuous 2300-watt metal cutting machines, was intercepted by NDLEA operatives at the SAHCO import shed of the airport’s cargo terminal. Each carton, upon closer inspection, was found to contain three blocks of high-grade heroin, bringing the total recovered amount to 45 blocks.

Drawing a parallel with another major drug bust, Marwa noted, “This seizure comes just seven months after the record-breaking 2,139.5kg cocaine seizure in Ikorodu, which remains the biggest singular cocaine seizure in NDLEA’s history.”

Following the initial discovery, the NDLEA launched a meticulous investigation, leading to the arrest of the freight agent, Olowolagba Wasiu Babatunde. Further investigation revealed that Babatunde was hired for clearing services by Mattpee Logistics, a South African company operated by a certain Mr. Kola.

With the apprehension of the initial suspect and the uncovering of the international dimension of the operation, the NDLEA continues its investigation, aiming to dismantle the entire drug trafficking network. This successful operation underscores the agency’s unwavering commitment to combating drug trafficking and protecting Nigeria from the harmful effects of illicit substances.