The Unit`s Customs Controller, Aliyu Mohammed on Thursday in Lagos announced the various seizures of contraband goods which Duty Paid Value was put at N2.2billion.
The seizures includes 22 exotic vehicles, 11,303 bags of foreign parboiled rice (equivalent of 18 trailers) and 2,410 frozen poultry products.
Others are 853 jerrycans of vegetable oil, 245 parcels of Indian Hemp, 4x40ft containers of unprocessed woods, 2,017 bales of used clothing and 283 cartons of various pharmaceuticals which were all without NAFDAC Registration numbers.
While showcasunh the seized goods to newsmen, Comptroller Aliyu Mohammed said the seizures were recorded by the operatives of the Command in the past one month, between September 4 and October 3rd 2018.
Among the 22 vehicles under detention/seizure were Nine Bullet proof vehicles including 4 Lexus Jeeps LX570 (2016), 3 Land Cruiser Jeeps (2016) and 2 Mercedes Benz G63 and S550 (2014/2015), 1 Toyota Rav4 (2015), 3 Toyota Hilux (2018) and 2 Toyota Highlander (2018).
While other vehicles were a Toyota Prado (2018) one Toyota Land cruiser (2016), one Toyota Corolla, one Toyota Fortuner (2017), one Toyota Sequoia, and a Lexus RX 350..
In his words “These 22 exotic Vehicles alone have a duty paid value of (N1,179,889,909.8) only. While some of the vehicles were intercepted at Ogere and Ijebu Ode expressway, the bullet Proof Vehicles were trailed and evacuated from some private residence in Victoria Island based on credible information”.
The Controller also said, “The Command also recovered the sum of N220,025,938.8 from Demand Notices on vehicles and other general goods whose importers tried to cut corners at the seaports, airport and border stations in the guise of false declaration, transfer of value, and shortchange in duty payment that are meant for the Federal Government of Nigeria, making a cumulative of N2,237,979,446 within the weeks under review making it a landslide in recent times”.
He commended the officers for their efforts in making the seizures possible.
According to him, “You will agree with me that smuggling is a global phenomenon, which cannot be curbed entirely but can be brought to its barest minimum. Let me use this opportunity to praise the commitment and diligence of the officers and men of the FOU A for thwarting the antics of dare devil smugglers. I urge you the media and the general public to join us in the fight against smuggling considering the economic diversification effort of the Federal Government that is for the good and wellbeing of all Nigerians”.
The seized Indian hemp and the medicaments, the Controller said will be handed over to NDLEA and NAFDAC for thorough investigation, adding that 28 suspects have been arrested in connection with the 89 seizures.