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NDLEA detains Italian-based Nigerian for allegedly trafficking N564m heroin

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has arrested a 40years old Italian-based Nigerian, Goodluck Odeh, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (NAIA) for allegedly trafficking N564 million heroin, concealed in the lining of false bottom of his suitcase.

Odeh, who was intercepted by the anti-drug agency with 2kilogramme of heroin, was said to have been picked at the airport during an outward clearance of Ethiopian aircraft 911enroute Abuja-Addis Ababa-Italy.

The suspect, an indigene of Ikpoba Okha Local Government in Edo State, was said to have relocated to Italy, passing through Libya, over six years ago and often works as a farm labourer and earn 50 Euro daily.

Aside from that, the 40years old suspect, in a statement signed by Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, Femi Babafemi, added that other part-time jobs include flyer distributor especially farming season was over and gets as much as 50 Euro daily.

Odeh claimed he came to Nigeria over two weeks ago to see his family in Nigeria and also use same opportunity to buy foodstuffs to sell on his return to Italy.

During interrogation by the anti-drug agency, he further explained that after spending some days between Edo and Delta states where he bought some foodstuffs, he equally travelled to Lagos to buy part of the foodstuffs and bushmeat, which according to him was cheaper and could be sold in Italy with a high-profit margin.

The Italian-based Nigerian claimed that he did not know how the drug found its way into the bag as he bought the suitcase from a second-hand material open market in Lagos not knowing that it contained the drug. When further asked about the market and address, he added, “I don’t know the address.”

According to the statement, Odeh stated that he was accompanied to the market where he bought the suitcase by a man he claimed he first met the day he arrived in Lagos from Benin, and that he came into Abuja from Lagos for an onward trip to Italy.

Commander, Abuja airport Command of NDLEA, Kabir Tsakuwa, stated that in accordance with the law, charges have already been filed against the suspect while investigations to explore other leads on the case would be intensified.

Chairman/CEO of the anti-drug law enforcement agency, Brig. General Buba Marwa (Retd) in his reaction to the latest drug burst, commended the Command and the personnel for their vigilance.

He said: “wherever the criminal elements go to export or import illicit drugs through our borders, they will surely have the new NDLEA to contend with”.

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