The Federal Operations Unit (FOU) Zone A of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) with its headquarters in Ikeja, Lagos has intercepted a total of 64 different vehicles worth over N1.3 billion in Lagos and Ogun States between the 1st and 30th November, 2017.
This is coming barely a month the unit intercepted 59 bulletproof vehicles from a hidden house in Ikoyi, Lagos. The 64 vehicles were allegedly smuggled into the country through the land borders.
Among the detained vehicles include 2 Lexus Jeep (Bullet Proof), 1 Toyota Land Cruiser (Bullet Proof), 9 Toyota Hilux, 8 Toyota Hiace Bus, 26 Toyota Corolla, 9 Land Cruiser Jeep, , 5 Toyota Camry, 1 Land Rover, 1 Nissan Sentra, 1 Pajero Jeep, all 2017 models and 1 Sienna 2015 model and 1 Lexus RX 350 among others .
While 57 vehicles were evacuated based on intelligence along Omole Estate, Ojodu and Olayiwole Close Lekki Phase one, the remaining 7 were intercepted while on information patrol along Ijebu Ode expressway and Olorunda.
Speaking on the detained vehicles, the Customs Area Controller of the unit, Comptroller Uba Garba Mohammed pegged the Duty Paid Value of the vehicles at One Billion, Three Hundred and Two Million, Nine Hundred and Twenty Seven Thousand, One Hundred and Six Naira, Sixteen Kobo (N1,302,927,106.16).
According to him,”As I speak with you, no body has come forward to claim ownership yet because we doubt if they have any customs papers on the vehicles, not to talk of the End-User Certificate for the bullet proof. Our Legal unit has already been mandated to investigate it and as soon as we get any head way about the owners or their agents, we will let the public know”.
He listed other items seized by the unit within the period under review to include 13, 333 bags of foreign parboiled rice (about 22 trailers), 1,390 cartons of frozen poultry products, 835 jerrycans of vegetable oil, 15 parcels of Indian Hemp, 1,101 pieces of used tyres, 205 bales of used clothing among others.
“We need to support the Federal Government policy on rice, encourage local rice farmers, the millers and patronize our own nutritional rice”, he said.
Mohammed added that a total of 17/20ft containers loaded with wood were under detention on the suspicion that they had not met the required guidelines for export even as he said that 1x20ft container was seized for carrying 385 cartons of Tiffany Crunch n’ Cream biscuit, 2,300 cartons of Tiffany chocolate and Toffee Sweet as against Engine Block declared in SGD describing the act as a clear case of false declaration which is tantamount to seizure.
He continued,”We have intercepted various contraband with a Duty Paid Value (DPV) of One Billion, Five Hundred and Ninety Five Million, One Hundred and Forty One Thousand, One Hundred and Forty Four Naira, Eighty One Kobo (N1,595,141,144.81).
“Within the period under review, we have also recovered One Hundred and Eight Million, Three Hundred and Six Thousand, Eighteen Naira, Twenty Five Kobo (N108,306,018.25) making a cumulative of One Billion, Seven Hundred and Three Million, Four Hundred and Forty Seven Thousand, One Hundred and Sixty Three Naira, Six kobo (N1,703,447,163.06).
“In the spirit of inter-agency collaboration; the seized Indian hemp will be handed over to NDLEA after this press briefing for further investigation. Five (5) suspects have been arrested in connection with these 185 seizures and are currently in our custody”.
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