Cocaine worth N1.9 billion hidden in soles of shoes – NDLEA


The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, has seized a consignment of cocaine worth £3.8 million (N1.9 billion) at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

The substance, weighing 9.150 kilogrammes, was concealed inside soles of shoes.

According to a statement by the agency on Sunday, the substance was discovered in a shipment of shoes during inward screening of passengers on a Turkish Airline flight from Sao Paulo, Brazil.

It was the agency’s last arrest of 2016 at the airport.

Muhammad Abdallah, Chief Executive of the NDLEA, said the huge profit derived from drug trafficking has made it a top priority for drug cartels.

“We must continue to take deliberate steps to intercept drugs and ultimately prevent the criminal enrichment of drug cartels,” said Mr. Abdallah, a retired colonel.

“Illicit drug proceeds negatively affect economic development, could be used to corrupt government officials and terrorism funding thereby subjecting mankind to widespread destruction.”

“There was an arrest at the weekend of a 34 year old suspect, Okolo Emenike Kingsley, who hails from Ezeagu, Enugu State,” Hamisu Lawan, NDLEA commander at the Abuja airport, said.

“The motorcycle parts dealer said that he was offered the sum of one million naira to smuggle the drugs to Nigeria. Investigation is ongoing and the suspect is cooperating with our team of undercover officers.”

Mr. Okolo told NDLEA investigators that he travelled to Brazil in search of employment after recession hit his business in Nigeria.

“I am a motorcycle parts dealer, married with a child,” the suspect said.

“Things became worse for me in Brazil because I had no money to sustain myself while my work permit was being processed. I was equally confronted with the fear of deportation. This made me to be desperate in my search for quick wealth.

“In the process, I met my childhood friend who offered me one million naira to traffic cocaine to Nigeria. He also paid for my ticket and gave me three bags of shoes containing the cocaine. On arrival at the Abuja airport, the cocaine was detected and I was arrested. I had wanted to invest the one million naira in business in Nigeria,” Mr. Okolo said.

Mr. Abdallah commended the arresting officers describing the seizure as one of the benefits of training.

“The seizure is a validation of enhanced capacity of officers due to series of training programmes carried out by the Agency.

“The training covering investigation, raid operations as well as prosecution was conducted with the assistance of the United States government, European Union (EU) and United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). This is just a tip of the iceberg because as the benefits of these training begin to manifest, more drugs shall be detected and cartels dislodged in the days ahead.”

The NDLEA boss said the suspect would soon be charged to court.


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  • Netanyahu

    Just send him and his accomplices to long jail terms. All this stories about hardship or recession is nonsensical. These are criminals, simple.

  • Höly Wähala

    Don’t mind his watery excuse, most parts dealers are druggies anyways… the haul alone should tell any sane person the perp is a hardened drug dealer, his time is up, send him to prison make we face other pressing matters jare. Clown, giving my people bad name for the sake of quick profit. Nonsense!

    • Mufu Ola

      He travelled to Brazil due to recession.He smuggles drugs for 1m. How much did he spend to travel to Brazil for him to now hustle for 1m? Silly guy.

    • Julius

      Happy new year !

  • onyearmy

    Story teller! Tax payers money should not be wasted on endless trials and postponements in court. Straightforward judgement, and don’t forget his accomplices. A few rotten eggs giving us bad names.

    • Julius

      Too many rotten eggs.

      • onyearmy

        Ofcourse they’re everywhere. From parts dealers to alhaja/alhaji going on pilgrimage to Mecca. From west to east, north and south.

        • Julius

          Even in villages. You are 100% correct. God help us. Happy new year !

  • Right Minded

    Igbo people and desperation for money. No wonder Orji Uzor Kalu went to join APC to save his yansh from prosecution of all the blood money he made while in govt.

    • onyearmy

      Imbecile. How many Yoruba alhajas were arrested with drugs in the just concluded hajj? Omo ale, jatijati.

  • sammyctu ode

    It’s time for FG and all states governments to launch massive awareness programs to all Nigerians about these drug courriers. These small fries being arressted are not what we want but for DSS and other security agencies to go after the barons. I presume that one out of ten are culprits being arressted while nine get away. Proceeds of these drugs goes for all the heavy arms we see with militants, kidnappers, armed robbers and many criminals. We can’t have a just society being raised on drugs it’s a very dangerous trend and doesn’t help the expected sustainable values for our youths. It’s a fight that we must win against these criminals living under our nose.

    • Omoba1

      You cannot win the fight against drugs. History has shown that. The more you apply force, the more this drug cartels become sophisticated. The fight against hard drugs has only empowered criminals and allowed criminals to control the industry

  • Omoba1

    Let’s be sincere, the war on drugs is ineffective. It only provides jobs to drug enforcement officers and ensure that they remain relevant. However, drug usage keeps increasing geometrically. This publication is nothing but to justify the budget allocation of NDLEA. There is a widespread of drug abuse by teenagers (male and female) in the north. This is now a social problem as the urge to continue using drugs has led these teenagers to other vices.

    Some other countries are reviewing their war on drugs and considering placing a health and social tax for drug consumption. Some cities now allow recreational usage whilst others are considering removing the ban on drugs.

    Nigeria should consider adopting such measures and also educating youths on the dangers of drug usage and abuse. There is the need for regulation and control rather than fighting hard drug consumption. After all for how long will this fight continue because it seems not to be working

  • Rommel

    These are the types of people who are financing and supporting this IPOB and BIAFRA movements,people who think and believe that were it to be their kinsman at the airport,they would not be caught,it is such sentiments that is driving the agitation and nothing more,all over southeast Asia,our boys are filling up prisons on drug related offences, instead of our people to stop and think,we are rather chasing shadows

    • aboki

      We know THEM by their CHARACTERS in form of DRUGS PUSHING, 419ners, FORGERY, Operating baby factories COUPLED WITH Kidnapping and ARM ROBBERY indeed is synonymous to Igbo race.
      WAILING WAILERS nna talk now!
      They want DONALD TRUMP to give them BIAFRA REPUBLIC with these attitudes via internet.
      They abused our national leaders with names calling due to their poor background.
      Very ingrate and uncultured people with no human feeling tarnishing the Nation’s Image in the global perspective.
      Otile ke!

    • Julius

      Thank you. We need to start telling ourselves the truth, the only way to stop this deadly business. These folks simply do not care what happens to them. Its sickness, love of money

    • onyearmy

      Yes! Very correct. The likes of Ade Bendel, lanre shittu, Bola Tinubu and the current Senator representing Ogun East senatorial district. Somebody should remind me his name.

      • Rommel


  • Stella Dominic