Customs impounds 37 vehicles loaded with smuggled rice

The Ogun Area command of the Nigeria Customs Service yesterday said it impounded 37 vehicles loaded with smuggled rice from Benin Republic.

Deputy Comptroller in charge of Enforcement, Mohammed Gagiyo while briefing newsmen at Idiroko said the vehicles were intercepted by officers while on surveillance patrol along Ipokia, Idiroko/Owode and Alari/Ifoyintedo axis respectively.

He said the command’s anti-smuggling effort which he said has been redesigned led to the seizure including others recorded on a daily basis. “Only last week, the proactive officers and men of Ogun command while on surveillance patrol made a spectacular seizure of 37 vehicles loaded with illegally imported rice along Ipokia, Idiroko/Owode and Alari axis.

“In our quest to combat smuggling and reduce it to the barest minimum, the command’s anti-smuggling architecture has been redesigned to achieve maximum result. In line with this, huge volumes of seizures are recorded on a daily basis,” he said. Gagiyo said three suspects were arrested in connection with the seizure and would be charge to court after investigation is concluded.

While reiterating that the ban on importation of rice through the land borders is still in force, the customs boss said the command will continue to collaborate with other government agencies to rid the nation of cross border trade and smuggling of any sort. The quantity of the smuggled rice and the Duty Paid Value (DPV) were yet to be ascertained as at press time.