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Thursday, May 23, 2024

NDLEA Apprehends Two Elusive Drug Kingpins And Several Individuals For Swallowing 175 Packets Of Heroin

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has apprehended two notorious drug kingpins as a result of several weeks of intelligence-led operations across the country and abroad. Hakeem Babatunde Salami, the ringleader of the “Tajudeen Babatunde Abioye Transnational Criminal Organization,” and Okafor Ikechukwu Williams were arrested on October 5 and 10, respectively. Additionally, two other drug traffickers were apprehended after ingesting 175 packets of heroin.
A statement from the NDLEA on Sunday disclosed the details of the operation. Hakeem Babatunde Salami, the mastermind of the “Tajudeen Babatunde Abioye Transnational Criminal Organization,” was arrested at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, on October 10. He was involved in the illicit trade of various narcotics, including cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and ephedrine, between Nigeria, Brazil, Ghana, South Africa, Mozambique, and Europe. Salami had fled to South Africa after one of his syndicate members, Suleiman Babatunde Oba, was arrested at Lagos airport on August 25 for attempting to export ephedrine to South Africa. Salami was apprehended through a partnership with South African authorities and other intelligence and investigative methods. Some of his luxury vehicles were seized, and his home in Surulere, Lagos, was sealed. Other cartel members already in custody include Suleiman and Godwin Edet Mathew.
Another cartel head, Okafor Ikechukwu Williams (aka Jantu), and his wife, Okafor Ifeyinwa Grace, were arrested on Thursday, October 5, when NDLEA operatives raided their hideout in Lagos. They recovered 27.566 kilograms of methamphetamine concealed in a blue box and two sacks, ready for export to Europe and Asia. Their Lexus RX350 was also seized during the operation. The couple’s arrest followed weeks of intelligence gathering about the activities of the criminal network.
At the Abuja airport, another trafficker, Nwofor Ejiogu Charles, was arrested on Friday, October 6, during the outward clearance of a Qatar Airways flight to Doha. After a body scan revealed he had ingested cocaine, he was placed under observation and expelled 75 pellets of cocaine weighing 1.653 kilograms.
On the following day, Saturday, October 7, another trafficker, Nwufo Charles Okwudili, was arrested while attempting to board a Lufthansa Airlines flight to Paris, France, via Frankfurt, Germany. After a body scan, he was taken to the recovery room, where he excreted 96 wraps of heroin with a total weight of 1.413 kilograms.


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