HIV positive woman arrested for alleged drug trafficking gives birth in Customs cell

A pregnant woman arrested by operatives of the Seme Border Area Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) for being in possession of 16 packages of Indian Hemp put to bed on Wednesday while in custody.
Customs Area Controller of the Command, Comptroller Othman Abdulsalam, who disclosed this while briefing the media on the Command’s activities and performance in the first half of this year, said that the woman (names withheld), also tested HIV Positive.
He said she was arrested along Seme border in a vehicle heading to the Republic of Benin.
The Seme Customs boss said that the drugs, which were concealed in the woman’s luggage, have been handed over to the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).
“It was the very day she was arrested that she began labour and she was referred to our clinic where she delivered a baby boy. She got complications and she was rushed to the General Hospital where they discovered that she was HIV Positive. So we allowed her to stabilize before we handed her and the drugs over to NDLEA”, Othman said.

He also disclosed that the Command arrested 21 suspects some of whom have been granted bail but are still under investigation.
The customs boss said that a total of 557 contraband items with a duty paid value of N290 million were seized by the Command during the first half of the year. The figure, he said, is against 172 seizures with a duty paid value of N90 million recorded in the corresponding period of 2012. The seized items include used vehicles, rice, vegetable oil, second hand clothes and poultry products among others.
He also disclosed that the Command collected over N3.9 billion revenue between January and June this year as against N3.8 billion collected in the corresponding period of last year.
According to Othman, the Command would have collected more money into the coffers of government but for the effect of the federal government’s directive on containerization of imported goods which has necessitated the restructuring of haulage trucks plying the Seme Border route as well as the general drop in the volume of importation through the border.
A total of N998 million, according to him, was also lost to the ECOWAS Trade Liberalization Scheme (ETLS).

Copyright Ships & Ports Ltd. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit given to as the source.