A trailer truck suspected to be carrying adulterated diesel petroleum product has been intercepted by operatives of the Federal Operations Unit Zone ‘C’ Owerri of the Nigeria Customs Service.
The truck according to a statement by the Public Relations Officer of the Unit, Ifeoma Onuigbo was intercepted on December 4th along Aba-Owerri road.
Area Controller in charge of the unit, Comptroller Mohammed Uba Garba said the exhibit was discovered to have been hidden in a specially constructed tank for illegal bunkering and also concealed with 256 sacks of expired animal
feeds to evade arrest.
He explained that the adulterated petroleum product causes blockages of heavy duty machines and generators,
which equally emit hazardous carbon monoxide, that are detrimental to the health.
He said that a suspect who gave his name as Chibuzor Njoku was arrested in connection with the crime and would be handed over to the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corp (NSCDC) for prosecution.
Aside this, Comptroller Mohammed said that a 1 X 40″ container loaded with 1,017 sacks of 50kg cannabis (Indian hemp) estimated at over N16,000 was intercepted on the Benin-Shagamu road also on the 7th of December.
According to him, the only suspect – James idoko who claimed to be a student upon interrogation attempted to deceive the Customs men by fraudulently presenting copies of suspected fake customs processed document on importation which was contrary to what was contained in the container.
He said the suspect offered a bribe of N350,000.00 in an attempt to avoid arrest, stating that he is currently in custody with the bribe money which now serves as an exhibit along with the container load of cannabis awaiting the estimated value from the NDLEA.
He noted that the increasing tempo of criminality, violence and juvenile delinquency among the youth is traceable to the rampant consumption of hard drugs such as marijuana hence the clamp down on those involved in the illicit business.
“Consumption of cannabis also affects family relationship and we must fight it to the last so as to have a better society,” he stated.
The Customs Controller who subsequently handed over the seized items and the suspect to the Principal Staff Officer (Operation and Intelligence) of the NDLEA Edo State Command Timothy Adewole for further investigation assured that the NCS would continue to collaborate and work in synergy with sister organizations such as NDLEA, NSCDC and NAFDAC to smoothen its operations.
Comptroller Mohammed said that a MAN diesel truck carrying 725 different brand of 50 kg foreign rice with Duty Paid Value of N24,650 million suspected to have been smuggled into the country through the numerous creeks in Calabar/Cameroun border was similarly intercepted by his men on the 7th of this month.
He said that a suspect who gave his name as Fredrick Eze and claimed to be a representative of the owners of the exhibit was arrested.
He noted that while the nation has continued to lose huge revenue, many lives have been lost consequent upon the unabated practice of smuggling.
He therefore advised Nigerians to imbibe a greater sense of patriotism in line with “the change begins with me” mantra recently launched by Mr. President by eschewing all acts and conducts inimical to the nation.
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