Ex-footballer, a Brazilian returnee, two Malians, were arrested by the NDLEA over possession of cocaine

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, arrested an ex-footballer, Okafor Emmanuel Junior, at Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, on his arrival from Sao Paulo, Brazil on board an Ethiopian Airlines flight with 1.40kg of crack cocaine concealed in his bags.

The 33-year-old native of Arochukwu Local Government in Abia State was apprehended on Monday, September 26th, 2022, after anti-narcotic officers discovered he concealed the illicit substance in the handles of his bags and padded the top edges with the class A drug.

During the preliminary interview, Okafor disclosed that he was an ex-footballer with the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, UNTH Enugu FC, where he played for four seasons before leaving for Sri Lanka in 2014. He further stated that he moved to Brazil from Sri Lanka after playing for two seasons but could not advance his football career in Brazil due lack of official documents.

Another Brazilian returnee, Ibeh Chinedu Damian, was arrested the same day upon his arrival at the Lagos airport from Sao Paulo, Brazil via an Ethiopian Airlines flight. Ibeh, who hails from Ahiazu, Mbaise Local Government Area of Imo State, was found to have concealed 3.20kg of black cocaine, popularly known as Lucci, in the false bottoms of his two bags.

In his statement, he said he was to be paid three million, one hundred thousand naira (N3,100,000) for the successful delivery of the drug in Nigeria.

In the same vein, an attempt by a 32-year-old businesswoman, Mrs. Pamela Odin, to traffic 2.150kg of Rohypnol through the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, NAIA, Abuja to Istanbul, Turkey has been thwarted by NDLEA operatives. The mother of one was arrested on Friday, September 23rd, while attempting to board a Turkish Airlines flight with the drug concealed inside the pepper and packed among foodstuffs.

The indigene of Afiesere village, Ughelli North Local Government, Delta State said she operates a restaurant in Istanbul, Turkey but came to Nigeria to see her relatives and buy food items for her restaurant business.

Meanwhile, two Malians: Mohammed Demoele, 38, and Coulibaly Maliki, 56, have been arrested by officers of the Marine Unit of NDLEA at Ebute Ero jetty in Lagos for attempting to export 34.2kg bottles of new psychoactive substance, Akuskura to Mali through Cotonou, Benin Republic.

In Taraba state, operatives on Thursday 29th Sept. intercepted 100 compressed blocks of Cannabis Sativa weighing 73.500kg, concealed inside animal feeds, while their counterparts in Ogun state on Saturday 1st October arrested a physically challenged drug dealer, Abdulrahman Mohammed, with 104kg of compressed Cannabis Sativa recovered from him. Another suspect, Ms. Safiya Bello, was also arrested in the Shagamu area of the state with 27kg of psychotropic substance.

The Chairman/Chief Executive of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), commended the officers and men of Seaports Operations, MMIA, Ogun, and Taraba Commands for their resilience, while charging them and others across the country to intensify ongoing offensive action against drug cartels and traffickers wherever they may be located in any part of Nigeria.

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