Barristers & Solicitors
NDLEA arrests clergyman, others with drugs at Lagos airport

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) says it has arrested Rev. Ugochukwu Ekwem, General Overseer of Christ Living Hope Church, at Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Ikeja, Lagos, for alleged drug trafficking.

This was stated in a statement by Mr.  Femi Babafemi, Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, on Sunday in Abuja.

According to Babafemi, the suspect was arrested with 54 sticks of drugs wrapped around his body on his way to a three-week crusade in Nairobi, Kenya.

The young and popular preacher’s church is located in Isuaniocha, Mgbakwu road, Awka, Awka North LGA, Anambra state.

Babafemi added that the suspect who also has two other branches in Lagos and Abuja was arrested on March 7.

According to him, the arrest occurred during the external clearing of passengers aboard an Ethiopian Airlines flight from Addis Ababa to Nairobi.

When tested, the 54 sticks proved positive to cannabis.

”The clergyman confessed during preliminary interview that he packed that quantity of illicit substance on his body to use during his three-week crusade in Kenya,” he said.

Nnakeanyi Chukwuka, a passenger who arrived at the airport on an Ethiopian Airlines flight from Sao Paulo, Brazil through Addis Ababa, was also arrested, according to Babafemi.

He said that the suspect was intercepted during the inward clearance of passengers at the E-Arrival Hall of the MMIA.

Babafemi added that 40 parcels of Cocaine concealed inside bottles of body cream with a gross weight of 9.70kg were recovered from the suspect during a search of his luggage.

According to the NDLEA spokesman, the suspect was detected with 2, 090 Tramadol 225mg and Flunitrazepam tablets at the airport’s Departure Hall.

“The suspect who hails from Edo state, but lives in Italy claimed ownership of the recovered psychotropic substances, ” he said.

He added that operatives also arrested a freight agent, Rafiu Abbas, at the Nigerian Aviation Handling Company (NAHCO), Export Shed of the airport.

This, he said was when the suspect presented a cargo containing 19.15kg cannabis going to London.

“The illicit substance was concealed inside plastic containers labelled as “African Dishes” and packed in a bag,” he said.

The Chairman of the NDLEA, retired Brig.-Gen. Buba Marwa, praised the MMIA officers and men for the spectacular seizures and arrests, according to Babafemi.

Culled from TVC