The officers of the National Drug Control Agency (NDLEA) dismantled a drug syndicate operating at Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) in Lagos.
The gang was behind the smuggling of 1,584,000 tramadol tablets seized on March 15 by NDLEA, Aviation Security (AVSEC) and Customs personnel.
This was revealed in a statement on Wednesday March 30 by Femi Babafemi, NDLEA Media and Advocacy Director.
Babafemi disclosed that the seizures included 17 250mg cartons of ‘Tamra’ brand Tramadol weighing 669.70kg and five 225mg cartons of ‘Royal’ brand Tramadol weighing 217.15kg.
The substance imported from Pakistan was smuggled onto the airport tarmac, via a Skyway Aviation Handling Company (SAHCO) vehicle, and intercepted in the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) staff yard.
Ofijeh John Mowa, a SAHCO driver, and Nyam Gazu Alex, a Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO) security guard, were first arrested.
Five others were then caught, including ring boss Yunana Fidelis. The others are Adesanwo Temitope, Owoseni Taiwo Temidayo, Fasoranti Shola and Bamigbade Jonathan.
Fidelis, a NACHO staff member, had fled Lagos for Kaduna after depositing N19,800,000 in cash with a BDC operator, to be paid later into his bank account.
On March 25, he left Kaduna and moved to Abuja where he was finally arrested by NDLEA officers at around 7 p.m. on March 27.
The suspect was arrested while attempting to collect N1,000,000 in cash from an undercover agent posing as a BDC operator.
Speaking on other NDLEA operations, Babafemi said a professional meth cook (Mkpuru Mmiri), Reuben Bekweri, 34, was arrested in Owerri.
He was distributing one kilogram of the illicit drug he had prepared and packaged in seven nylon sachets in the Irete neighborhood of Imo.
In Ado Ekiti, narcotics officers arrested a 42-year-old lawyer, Mayowa Oluwanisomo, in Zone 4, Embassy Island, Moferere area, on March 28.
A total of 11,570 tramadol tablets weighing 7.3 kilograms were recovered during the search of his home.
Oluwanisomo acknowledged the property, adding that he graduated from Ekiti State University (EKSU) and the Abuja campus of the Nigerian Law School in 2016.