This Day (Lagos)

21 June 2011

Nigeria: Customs Intercept U.S. Dollars in Lagos Port, Arrest Agent

Intense surveillance of the Customs High Command which started in the wake of the arms and ammunitions intercepted last year at Nigeria 's premier port, Apapa Quay, Lagos has paid off as men and officers of the Tin Can Island Port (TCIP) Command, Apapa Monday discovered a sack loaded with United States of America (USA) dollars.

The foreign currency which was neatly packed inside a sack was concealed among other items in a container inside the terminal.

Though the exact amount could not be immediately ascertained as some Customs Officers in collaboration with some other security operatives were still counting the money at press time, the amount is said to be in the range of thousands of dollars.

The sack containing US dollars was discovered by some men and officers of the command on routine examination of cargoes in the terminal that has made history as the port where the highest amount of heroine and cocaine in Nigerian history was intercepted last year.

The Public Relations Officer of Nigeria Customs Service (NCS), TCIP Command, Mr. Chris Osunkwo who confirmed the development said a licensed customs agent who was in the process of clearing the consignment from the port has been arrested while the consignee is on the run.

He stated that as soon as investigations into matter are concluded, the suspects and his accomplices would be charged to court.

According to him, the dollars so far counted by the officials was $110, 060 at press time.

Amidst insinuations in some quarters that the US dollars may be counterfeit, an impeccable source told our correspondent last night that effort to ascertain the authenticity of the currency was on top gear as some top officials of Nigerian Security Printing and Minting Company Limited (NSPMC) have been invited to the port to assist the other government officials counting the money.

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