The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) at the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, has arrested two Brazilians alleged to have imported 23.865 kilogrammes of cocaine worth over N310 million.
NDLEA commander at the airport, Mr. Ahmadu Garba said the suspects, Dias Dos Santos Marcia Cristina, 36 and Lima Pereira Erick Diego, 20 who claimed to be tourists were arrested with canned cocaine amidst personal effects inside their luggage.
He said Cristina was caught with 9.400 kilogrammes of cocaine in her bag while Diego was found with 14.465 kilogrammes of the substance in his bag.
He said the Nigeria-Brazil cocaine trafficking route had gained notoriety over the years “but this is the first arrest of Brazilians with cocaine at the Lagos airport.”
“This development has not come as a surprise to narcotic investigators because drug cartels are always adopting new strategies of smuggling drugs. Two Brazilian drug suspects, a male and a female have been arrested with cocaine at the arrival hall of the airport. The arrest took place during the inward screening of passengers on an Emirates flight. The suspects travelled together from Sao Paulo, Brazil. During search operation, a total of 23.865 kilogrammes of cocaine was found on them.”
He said the tins were factory-sealed such that NDLEA personnel had to cut it open to discover the concealed drugs, adding that several canned drugs had been uncovered at the Lagos airport in the past.
The agency has also concluded arrangement to arraign the suspects in court.
Garba said the suspects said were tourists adding that they would be arraigned in court soon.
Meanwhile, the chief executive officer of NDLEA, Col. Muhammad Mustapha Abdallah (rtd) described as “impressive” and “commendable” narcotic interception at the airport.
He said NDLEA Act prohibits narcotic smuggling and called on nations to intensify the anti-narcotics campaign.
“This arrest is impressive. It is a clarion call for nations to work harder and deepen collaboration in the fight against narcotics. Collective efforts are required towards making local and international borders impenetrable by drug traffickers and other criminals,” he said.