OPERATIVES of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have busted a major cocaine warehouse in a secluded estate in the Ikorodu area of Lagos.
The agency said 1.8 tons (1,855 kilogrammes) of the illicit drugs worth more than $278.25 million, equivalent to about N194.7 billion in street value, were seized.
This was disclosed on Monday in a statement by Femi Babafemi, Director, Media & Advocacy of the NDLEA.
Babafemi added that four drug barons, including a Jamaican and the warehouse manager, had been arrested in the operation that lasted two days across different locations.
The statement read, “At least, four drug barons, including a Jamaican and the warehouse manager, have been arrested in the well coordinated and intelligence-led operation that lasted two days across different locations in Lagos State.
“Kingpins of the cocaine cartel in custody include Messrs Soji Jibril, 69, an indigene of Ibadan, Oyo State; Emmanuel Chukwu, 65, who hails from Ekwulobia, Anambra State; Wasiu Akinade, 53, from Ibadan, Oyo State; Sunday Oguntelure, 53, from Okitipupa, Ondo State; and Kelvin Smith, 42, a native of Kingston, Jamaica.
“They are all members of an international drug syndicate that the Agency has been trailing since 2018. Located at 6, Olukuola Crescent, Solebo estate, Ikorodu, the warehouse was raided on Sunday 18th September 2022, while the barons were picked from hotels and their hideouts in different parts of Lagos between Sunday night and Monday 19th September.”
The anti-narcotic agency said preliminary investigation revealed that the class A drugs were warehoused in the residential estate from where the cartel was trying to sell them to buyers in Europe, Asia and other parts of the world, and was stored in 10 travel bags and 13 drums.