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NDLEA nabs 44-year-old man for ingesting 96 pellets of cocaine at Abuja airport

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Gabriel Anthony Patrick

Arrests five varsity students, 72-year-old man, others over 5,721.92kg drugs

Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have arrested a 44-year-old father of three, Gabriel Anthony Patrick at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja for ingesting 96 pellets of cocaine, which he excreted in the custody of the agency.

Patrick, a native of Nike in Enugu North Local Council of Enugu State, was arrested on Friday, November 26, during an outward clearance of Turkish Airline at the boarding screening area of the airport enroute Abuja-Istanbul-Madrid.

According to a statement by NDLEA spokesperson, Femi Babafemi, yesterday, the suspect had travelled to Germany in 1996 for two years on asylum, after which he relocated to Spain in 1999 where he currently holds a residence permit and works as a driver in a food manufacturing company.

He claimed he came into Nigeria on November 17 to sell clothes and car spare parts he shipped to Lagos earlier. Patrick however said he couldn’t sell his consignments, which cost him 4,000 Euros excluding the cost of shipment because they were priced below the cost price at Ladipo market in Lagos and he needed to travel back to Spain to resume work after the expiration of his annual leave.

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This, he said, led him to accept an offer to traffic the drug for which he would be paid 1,500 Euros when he successfully delivers the consignment to someone in Spain.

He claimed he left Lagos for Enugu to see his family members, and then travelled on November 25 to Onitsha, Anambra State where he was picked from Upper Iweka park at night and taken to a house where he was given the 96 pellets of cocaine to ingest before leaving for Abuja to board his flight to Madrid the following day.

ALSO, NDLEA operatives at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos have arrested one Okorie Godwin Onyeribe over his attempt to export 21.85kg of cannabis concealed in foodstuff to London. He was nabbed at the NAHCO export shed of the airport on Friday, December3.

SIMILARLY, five students of American University of Nigeria, Yola, Adamawa and University of Maiduguri, Borno State were among suspects arrested for drug offences in raids across nine states in the last week.

Babafemi said two of the students, Emmanuel Thlama and Jonah Joshua were arrested with 16.750kg cannabis on the night of November 30, when operatives raided a settlement opposite Gate 4 of the University of Maiduguri.

He gave the names of the other three, all AUN undergraduate students, as, Ekene Asher, Daniel Alkali and Emmanuel Smooth who were arrested at 11:30p.m. on Thursday, December 2, after taking delivery of Loud, a strong variant of cannabis ordered by Ekene for them to smoke.

Earlier same day, Babafemi said, operatives also intercepted a motorised concrete mixer truck used to conceal 2000.6kg of cannabis, loaded at Ogbese in Ondo State.

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He said: “Two suspects arrested with the drugs, Matthew Donuwe and Friday Nborgwu claimed they have spent a month on the road from Ondo State, hoping to deliver the consignment in Mubi, Adamawa before they were arrested at Girei in Girei Local Council of the state.

“In Oyo State, operatives intercepted 608.40kg of cannabis sativa concealed in a black Toyota Sequoia SUV with registration number Lagos MUS 553 GN and parked around toll gate area, Ibadan-Ife Expressway, Egbeda Local Council in Ibadan on Friday, December 3.

“The following day, operatives equally seized 85.90kg cannabis recovered from the boot of a Nissan Primera car, marked Lagos FJK890DZ and in one of the rooms of an apartment where search operation was carried out at Adegbayi area, Alakia, Egbeda Local Council.

“Those arrested in connection with the seizure include, Benson Uzoka, 46; Kafayat Adeyemi Uzoka, 40; Ndidi Uzoka, 39 and Christopher Uzoka, 42.

“While the duo of Praise Emmanuel and Aminu Aliyu were arrested with 228kg cannabis in Kano, operatives in Taraba stormed cannabis farms in Changso village, Kurmi LGA, located on the mountains between Nigeria and Cameroon, evacuated 364kg of the illicit drug and set the rest on fire. Equally, ThankGod Danladi who has just finished a jail term in October was arrested on Wednesday 1st December with 67 kg cannabis in another raid in the state.

“In Niger State, operatives intercepted a commercial bus with 215 kg cannabis concealed in a false bottom and side door of the bus, along Mokwa – Jebba road.

“Two suspects, a driver and his conductor were arrested and they claimed to have loaded the consignment in Ogere, Ogun State and were heading to Sokoto as their final destination.

“In Delta State, a lady Tina Ujene was arrested in Ibusa with 1.1kg cannabis while a follow up raid on her supplier’s home led to the recovery of 54.7kg of the same substance.

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“Different quantities of cannabis, Methamphetamine, cocaine, heroin, Diazepam and Exol-5 were seized in raids at AP- Eleme and Garki, Oil Mill areas of Port Harcourt, as well as Lewe and Kadiri in Gokana LGA, Rivers state on Friday 3rd Dec. In Ondo state, a 72-year-old Emmanuel Akanbi was arrested at Odofin camp, Uso, Owo LGA with 2,050kg cannabis.

“Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), has commended officers and men of the agency for their recent efforts.

“He charged them along with their colleagues in other commands to constantly focus on raising the bar of their achievements until the last gram of illicit drug is taken away from every community in Nigeria.”

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Man ‘Selling Hard Drugs on Jiji’ Arrested in Abuja

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Orakwe Chibuike Celestine

Orakwe Chibuike Celestine, the MD/CEO of Marvelrock Pharmaceuticals and Stores Ltd., has been arrested by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for selling illicit and controlled drugs on jiji.ng, a popular e-commerce platform.

The arrest was made known in a statement by Femi Babafemi, the NDLEA’s director of media and advocacy, on Wednesday.

Orakwe, a University of Abuja graduate, registered the pharmaceutical company on December 16, 2014, with the certificate and support of a licensed pharmacist, who opted out of the deal in 2017, according to Babafemi.

“The suspect continued running the business and enrolled it on Jiji.ng platform in 2019. He, however, came under NDLEA’s radar in October 2021 when he advertised many pharmaceutical products such as Tramadol, Ketamine Hydrochloride injection, and Hypnox flunitrazepam tablets, among others, on the Jiji.ng online marketplace,” Babafemi said.

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“Between 26th October 2021 and 8th August 2022, the team of anti-narcotic officers assigned to investigate Orakwe’s drug business activities was able to establish the suspect was selling Tramadol 225mg and other illicit/controlled drugs through the e-commerce platform.

“As a result, the suspect was arrested with some quantities of Tramadol and Swiphnol brand of Rohypnol on Monday 8th August at a drink joint in Jabi area of Abuja where he had gone to make some supplies of orders made through his online channel on Jiji.ng.”

While reacting to the development, Mohammed Marwa, the NDLEA chairman, said the “painstaking investigation and process of arresting the businessman” should send a strong message to those hiding behind the internet to engage in marketing and selling of illicit/controlled drugs.

“The agency will definitely get them to face the consequences of their action,” he said.

FIJ

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3 Nigerians ‘Steal’ Over $5m From US Universities

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The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has accused three Nigerians living in the United Kingdom of defrauding universities, individuals and companies in the United States of over $5 million.

According to a statement obtained from the US Department of Justice, the FBI extradited Oludayo Kolawole John Adeagbo, Donald Ikenna Echeazu and Olabanji Egbinola to the US from the United Kingdom on August 10.

The three Nigerians allegedly swindled universities and companies in North Carolina, Texas and Virginia out of millions of dollars between 2016 and 2018.

Adeagbo and Echeazu are charged with wire fraud conspiracy, money laundering conspiracy and aggravated identity theft for defrauding a North Carolina university of more than $1.9 million via a business email compromise scheme.

“According to allegations contained in the indictment, from August 30, 2016, to January 12, 2017, Adeagbo and Echeazu conspired with other individuals to obtain information about significant construction projects occurring throughout the United States, including an ongoing multi-million-dollar project at the victim University,” the statement read in part.

“To execute the scheme, the defendants (Adeagbo and Echeazu) allegedly registered a domain name similar to that of the legitimate construction company in charge of the University’s project and created an email address that closely resembled that of an employee of the construction company.

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“Using the fake email address, the co-conspirators allegedly deceived and directed the University to wire a payment of more than $1.9 million to a bank account controlled by an individual working under the direction of defendants. Upon receiving the payment, the co-conspirators allegedly laundered the stolen proceeds through a series of financial transactions designed to conceal the fraud.”

Adeagbo also conspired with others to defraud individuals, local governments and a college in Houston, Texas.

Between November 2016 and July 2018, Adeagbo allegedly conspired with others to take part in cyber-enabled business email compromises to steal more than $3 million from victims in Texas. Adeagbo targeted local government entities, construction companies and a Houston-area college, among others.

He and his co-conspirators registered domain names that looked similar to legitimate companies. They then sent emails from those domains, pretending to be employees at those companies, according to the charges. Adeagbo and his co-conspirators deceived those customers into sending wire payments to bank accounts they controlled.

The Eastern District of Virginia is charging Egbinola with wire fraud and money laundering.

According to a criminal complaint issued by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, from September 26, 2018, to December 26, 2018, Egbinola allegedly conspired with others to defraud a Virginia-based university.

Egbinola and co-conspirators created and used a fraudulent email account that incorporated the name of a construction company that had a large ongoing contract with the university. Using this email account, Egbinola and co-conspirators deceived the university into transferring $469,819.49 to a bank account they controlled. The money was quickly laundered and transferred overseas through numerous transactions.

FBI investigation showed that Egbinola repeatedly accessed the email account used to defraud the Virginia university.

UK authorities arrested Adeagbo, Echeazu and Egbinola on April 23, 2020. The US ordered their extradition in September 2021. The three filled appeals, but the UK High Court rejected them on July 12, 2022.

Echeazu and Egbinola face up to 20 years in prison if convicted for their crimes, while Adeagbo faces up to 40 years if convicted for his crimes perpetrated in North Carolina and Texas.

FIJ

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One killed as commercial cyclists, police clash in Lagos

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The clash, which occurred around 4:30pm at the Oko-Oba area of Abule Egba, was said to have been triggered by a minor accident on the Abule Egba Bridge involving a motorist and a rider.

It was gathered that police operatives who went to the accident scene to broker peace between the motorist and a mob of motorcyclists that gathered were violently attacked by the irate crowd.

The operatives were said to have defended themselves leading to the death of one of the riders.

Confirming the incident, police spokesman, SP Benjamin Hundeyin, said the situation was brought under control by the Divisional Police Officer (DPO) and his men.

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He said two suspects were arrested and that investigation was ongoing.

“We are fully aware of the disturbances in Oko-Oba area of Lagos State. Our officers have been deployed. Situation has been brought under control.

“After a minor accident involving a car and a motorcycle occurred on the Abule-Egba Bridge at about 1630hrs today, motorcycle riders in their numbers started fomenting trouble.

“Police arrived on the scene to quell the unrest. The riders violently attacked the Police.

“This resulted in the death of one of the riders. Normalcy has been restored to the area. The DPO Oko-Oba and his men are fully on ground to forestall any breakdown of law and order.”

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