National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has busted a drug syndicate operating at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos.
A statement on Wednesday by Femi Babafemi, Director of Media, gave an update on recent operations.
The gang was behind the smuggling of 1,584,000 tablets of Tramadol seized on March 15 by NDLEA operatives, Aviation Security (AVSEC) and Customs personnel.
The seizures include 17 cartons of 250mg Tramadol branded as “Tamra” weighing 669.70kg and five cartons of 225mg Tramadol under the brand name “Royal” weighing 217.15kg.
The substance imported from Pakistan was smuggled through the airport tarmac, via a Skyway Aviation Handling Company (SAHCO) vehicle, and intercepted at the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) Personnel Yard.
Ofijeh John Mowa, a SAHCO driver, and Nyam Gazu Alex, a security guard with the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO), were initially arrested.
Five others were later nabbed including the ring leader, Yunana Fidelis. The rest are Adesanwo Temitope, Owoseni Taiwo Temidayo, Fasoranti Shola and Bamigbade Jonathan.
Fidelis, NACHO staff, had fled Lagos to Kaduna after depositing N19,800,000 cash with a BDC operator to be paid later into his bank account.
On March 25, he left Kaduna and relocated to Abuja where he was eventually arrested by NDLEA operatives at about 7 pm on March 7.
The suspect was caught while trying to collect N1,000,000 cash from an undercover agent who posed as a BDC operator.
However, a professional methamphetamine (Mkpuru Mmiri) cook, Reuben Bekweri, 34, was arrested in Owerri.
He was in the process of distributing one kilogram of the illicit drug he cooked and packaged in seven nylon sachets at the Irete area of Imo.
In Ado Ekiti, narcotic officers on March 28 nabbed a 42-year-old lawyer, Mayowa Oluwanisomo, in Zone 4, Embassy Island, Moferere area.
A total of 11,570 tablets of Tramadol weighing 7.3kilograms were recovered when his residence was searched.
Oluwanisomo admitted ownership, adding that he graduated from Ekiti State University (EKSU) and Abuja campus of the Nigerian Law School in 2016.