CROSS RIVER: Customs Service Intercepts Cameroonian With Elephant Tusks Worth N300m

2024-02-12 19:50:42

The Whistler Nigeria

The Nigeria Customs Service (NIS) said it intercepted 52 units of elephant tusks in Mfum worth N300m from a Cameroonian, Mohammed Ibrahim in Cross River State.

The NIS Area Comptroller of Cross River Command, Ahmed Waziri, disclosed this on Monday while speaking at a news conference in Calabar.

Waziri said the suspect was apprehended in Mfum, a border town of Ikom Local Government Area of the state.

According to him, the tusks, weighing 200 kilogram were found in the possession of the suspect, suspected to be travelling to Lagos State.

Ibrahim, according to the command was travelling in a Honda SUV truck with number plate FST 733 HH, when operatives of the NIS apprehended him.

"The suspect has two Nigeria number plates (Lagos): FST 733 HH and (CMR) LT 214 AY. A service pistol was discovered inside the vehicle with live ammunition," Waziri revealed.

Upon interrogation, the NIS discovered that the suspects allegedly specialised in the exportation of the tusks across international borders.

"The suspect carried those items from Cameroon using Nigeria as a transit route probably to his final destination.

"The suspect is with us, and the goods are at the government warehouse.

"I want to commend my eagle-eyed officers at Mfum for being able to intercept those items worth over N300 million and also apprehending the suspect.

"Our legal unit is already on the matter, and he will be charged to court immediately we complete our investigations," Waziri said.

He further noted that the arrest would serve as a deterrent to other locals and foreigners that "Nigeria will not be used as a transit route for illicit products.

"It is important our border communities wake up and live up to their responsibilities because many of such items pass through their domain in most cases without their knowledge."

On Friday, the Service had arrested three men for an illegal export of elephant tusks to Asia.

The men were arrested at different locations in Lagos between January 25 and February 4 and 6, for also facilitating the sale and export of five pieces of elephant tusk, weighing 25.35kg, and worth about $16,000 equivalent (N23,520,000).

2024-02-12 News