The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) yesterday arrested Tochukwu Nzom, 46, for allegedly inserting 225 grammes of cocaine in his anus.
He was about boarding an Air France flight to Paris, France at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) in Ikeja, Lagos when he was arrested. He tested positive for narcotics on being screened.
NDLEA airport commander Hamza Umar said two others – Henry Idehen and Peter Ilemena – were caught with 915 grammes and 1.225 kilogrammes of cocaine while returning from Brazil on an Emirates flight.
Idehen ingested 56 wraps weighing 915 grammes; Ilemena concealed 1.225 kilogrammes of cocaine. The total weight of the drugs seized from the suspects is 2.365 kilogrammes”.
Nzom, an auto parts dealer, who hails from Anambra State is married and has two children.
He said he would have been paid $1,500.
“I was drinking with friends when I heard them talking about drugs.
I actually volunteered to smuggle drugs because of my financial situation. They agreed to pay me $1,500 because it was only three wraps weighing 225 grammes. I am from a poor home,” Nzom said.
Ilemena said he too requested to smuggle drugs because of financial hardship.
“I am from Enugu State. I am married to a Brazilian woman and we have a child.
I work as a salesboy in a supermarket.
I overheard some of my friends discussing about drugs and I indicated interest.
That was how it started. The drug was packed in a bag for me and they promised to pay me $2,500.
I am so sad, disappointed and ashamed of myself,” he said.
Idehen, who lived in Brazil for about a decade, admitted making “a costly mistake.”
“I did not know what came over me.
I have been a hard-working person since my childhood. My wife and three children are in Benin while I struggle in Brazil as the bread winner.
My son gained admission into the university and he is very brilliant.
I needed to pay for his tuition and other expenses. I would have made $12,000 from the drug deal,” he said.
NDLEA Chairman/Chief Executive Ahmadu Giade said: “It is worrisome for the suspects to voluntarily smuggle drugs.
This shows that they are morally bankrupt. The agency will not relent in the fight against drug trafficking,” Giade said.