Tincan Customs Command intercepts arms, military kits, others concealed in personal effects container

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The Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), Tincan Island Ports Command on Monday said that it has intercepted some military kits, arms, and military already made food while carrying out examination on a container believed to have contained personal effects of a Nigerian returning home from his sojourn abroad.

Speaking to newsmen at the command’s headquarters in Lagos, the Customs Area Controller of the command, Comptroller Yusuf Bashar said that a suspect, Mr. Christian Mbachi was arrested in connection with the seizures and he had been helping the command in its investigations.

Bashar who gave the Container No. as MSCU 718443/6 said it contained 1 used 2004 model of Nissan Armada with Chassis No. 5NIAA08A69N709779 in which was found 1 set (9pcs) of Military bullet proof vest, 1 Military Helmet with rain proof, 1 Military Gas Mask with 2 spare glasses, 1 Pistol Punch, 1 Riffle Punch and 2 pairs of Military boots.

Others are 26 packs of Military already made food, 3,500 pieces of Premier Hollow Point Air Gun Pallets, 4000 pieces of Premier Hollow Point Air Gun Pallets, 1 Omni American Tactical Riffle with S/No.AR48634, 1 Moasberg American Pump Action with S/No.U648018 and 1 pair of camouflage wears and a jacket.

On the origin of the consignment, the customs boss revealed that the container was shipped to Nigeria from the United States of America and arrived the country on the 29th of November, 2016 and was fully examined on the 30th of November, 2016 adding that the information was withheld from the public so as to enable the command conclude investigations on the consignment.

He informed that the items and the suspect would be handed over to the Department of Security Services (DSS) to continue with the investigation and due diligence.

The CAC further disclosed that the command discovered during the discharge of a vessel that a certain vehicle carried a magazine with 10 rounds of live ammunitions.

According to him,”We got a hint that there is a magazine in one of the vehicles, so, we isolated the vehicle to give it a thorough check so as to ensure that apart from the magazine, nothing else illegal is in the vehicle and we discovered just this 10 live rounds and it was in a used Toyota Corolla car with Chassis No. 2T1BR32E54C30981, a 2004 model.

“These 10 pieces of live rounds of ammunition is called Harnadey 40 S&W ammunition with the magazine. This has no suspect yet because we discovered this just coming out of the vessel and so, we isolated the vehicle and we will certainly get to who own this vehicle so that we will work on it. But we will certainly hand it over to the DSS for custody of the ammunitions. They are too dangerous to be with unauthorized persons”.

On the container discovered to be containing military kits, guns and other items, the CAC informed that those items were discovered in a personal effects container ought to be duty free as designed by the Federal government to assist Nigerians who lived abroad and are coming home to settle from abroad where they had sojourned over the years but regretted that Nigerians now abuse such gesture.

He said, “These items were in a personal effects container, a container that government graciously said you shouldn’t pay duty because you are a Nigerian coming back home, whatever you bring back from abroad, government says don’t pay duty, take your cargo as it is because they are personal effects of your bedding and everything in your house. You can see the way Nigerians responded to that gesture by bringing pump action and even gas mask, only God knows what will happen and we will say no”.

He therefore appealed to the media to educate Nigerians living abroad and those about to travel that there were things that were not allowed into the country and therefore were prohibited warning that they should not be found in the custody of anyone who was not authorized to do so.

“At least no Green passport holder or a holder of the passport of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is allowed to buy these things in the open market. If they are illegally available in other countries for you to go and buy them, please do not go and buy them because we will capture them and we will arrest whoever comes with them”, he posited.

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