Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have arrested two suspected drug traffickers for allegedly laundering hard currencies estimated at about N175m from Greece and Austria.
It was learnt that the suspects – Edos Nicholas and Hallowell Lovely – were arrested at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport during the screening of passengers onboard a Turkish flight.
PUNCH Metro gathered that Nicholas was found in possession of €279,190, while $30,000 and £46,450 were recovered from Lovely. They reportedly concealed the sums inside envelopes and shoes.
Nicholas, who claimed to be working in a bakery in Austria, told investigators that several people had given him the money abroad for onward delivery to their relatives in Nigeria.
The suspect said, “The money does not belong to me. It was given to me by different people in Europe to give to their relatives. I have been living in Vienna, Austria, for over 15 years.”
The second suspect, Lovely, said, “I live in Athens and I work in an African shop. I have lived there for 12 years. The money belongs to many people and some of them are my friends.”
The NDLEA commander at the MMIA, Ahmadu Garba, said the money was found during routine search of passengers.
“We discovered €325,640 and $30,000 during the inward screening of passengers on a Turkish flight. Edos Nicholas was found in possession of €279,190 and Hallowell Lovely was found in possession of £46,450 and $30,000 – about N175m (parallel market) in all,” he said. Read more