Special

Within 4 Months, Oyo/Osun Customs arrest 63 suspected smugglers, generates N20 billion

Oyo/Osun Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) arrested sixty- three persons in connection with the smuggling of some prohibited items into the country.

Customs Area Comptroller in charge of Oyo and Osun States, Helen Ngozi, who disclosed this on Tuesday said the sixty- three suspects were arrested at various locations within the command area of coverage.

In the Business Day News, the arrest and interception of the prohibited items came several months after the Federal government closed the country’s borders.

Addressing newsmen on the activities of the command in the last four months at its headquarters in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital, Ngozi also said it generated the sum of N20.05b between January and April this year.

The command also intercepted 3, 465 bags of rice, 13 kegs of vegetable oil, 44 gallons of vegetable oil, 20 units of used tyres, 310 drums of 100 liters of PMS, 180 kegs of PMS and 180 bales of second hand clothing materials and other items.

“We made an unusual seizure of 180 bales of second-hand clothing from the train operated by the Nigerian Railway Corporation with duty paid value of N13,252,311. Other seizures include 3465 bags of 50kg parboiled rice with duty paid value of N82,636,185, 13 kegs of 25 litres of each of vegetable oil with duty paid value of N282,426, 44 gallons of 4 litres of each of vegetable oil with duty paid value of N278,805, 20 units of used tyres with duty paid value of N162,938. The total paid value for these seizures is N96,612,665.

She also said that during anti-smuggling activities of March and April 2020, the command made seizures of 310 drums of 100 litres each and 180 kegs of 25 litres each of Premium Motor Spirit (PMS) at different points and axis of the command saying they will be auctioned and the proceeds will be remitted accordingly.

“So, within the period under review, we have made 72 seizures and 63 detentions. We have carried out our enforcement and anti-smuggling activities with utmost professionalism, caution, and intelligence gathering”.

She disclosed that the cumulative duty paid value of all the seizures including means of conveyance from January to April is put at three hundred and twelve million, one hundred and eighty nine thousand, four hundred and fifty six naira only (N312,189,456).

The command, she stated, was able to seal a petrol station carrying out illegal activities.

“With smart intelligence gathering, we are able to identify a petrol filing station carrying out illegal activities within its premises. The petrol station has been sealed and suspects arrested were made to write statement and undertaking to desist from such illicit activities.

She however noted that the men of the command carried out the anti-smuggling activities with utmost professionalism.

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