Nigerian Army troops has apprehended an 18-year-old, Michael Atanda, and a 58-year-old, Adigun Olatunji, attempting to smuggle illicit substances into the country.
This was made known in a statement issued on Sunday by the Director, Army Public Relations, Maj. Gen. Onyema Nwachukwu, noting that suspects vehicle concealed with 296 wraps of cannabis was seized by troops along the Balogun border in Ogun State following an intelligence report.
Nwachukwu also disclosed that the suspects tried bribing the troops with N12m but they rejected the bribe offered.
The statement partly read, “Troops of 192 Battalion, 81 Division, Nigerian Army, acting on credible intelligence intercepted a suspected transnational drug syndicate operating with a Sienna 2001 Model Space Bus, with registration number Lagos APP 129 EF, loaded with illicit substances, suspected to be Cannabis Sativa. The suspects were intercepted on Sunday 14 January 2024, along the Balogun border in Ogun State.
“Vigilant troops conducted a thorough search on the vehicle and detected layers of compartments packed with 296 wraps of substance suspected to be marijuana.
“Preliminary investigation revealed that the wraps of illicit substance were transported from Benin Republic, through Ilara border communities en route Ifo, Ogun State.
It was further revealed that it took the transnational drug traffickers five months to conceal the substance for delivery to their clients. Two suspects were arrested in connection to the crime.
“The suspects, identified as one Mr Adigun Olatunji, age 54 years, and Mr Michael Atanda aged 18 years, both from Ilara Imeko in Afun LGA of Ogun State, reside in Benin Republic. “
The army spokesman added that the suspect had been taken into custody for further necessary actions, “after a failed attempt to bribe troops with the sum of N12,000,000.”
“Other items recovered from the suspects include one Benin Republic National ID Card, one Nigerian National ID card, and two small Itel mobile phones.
“Others include one Benin Republic driver’s licence; a Benin Republic passport, six Benin Republic SIM packs, two Benin Republic SIM cards, one Nigerian driver’s licence, one power bank, and one MP3 player.
“ Additionally, a memory card, local charms, as well as the sum of N52,700 only were recovered from the suspects.”