The Nigerian police has intercepted a mini truck conveying 34,865 live cartridges from the neighbouring Republic of Togo via a boarder city in Ogun.
The consignment in accordance with the Police was led for Onitsha, in Anambra state. The command also said that it had arrested three suspects such as a Togolese, Isa Muhammad and two Nigerians, Alabi Fayemi and Seyi Bamgbose, in connection with the incident.
He said the truck and the suspects were arrested on Friday by a Stop-and-search border patrol team at Olohunda, a border city between Abeokuta North and Imeko Afon local government areas of the State.
Iliyasu explained the cartridges were neatly concealed within the truck with registration number KSF 254 XX and was hauled to Onitsha in Anambra State. The Police Commissioner said the suspect offered financial inducement to the officers but rejected it, adding “the extant laws of the land will be invoked on them” (the suspects).
The mode of the concealment aroused the feeling of our guys, who stopped the car and properly searched it. Upon the search, 34, 865 live cartridges were discovered in cartons neatly hidden in the car,” he said.
Iliyasu explained that the police have commenced further investigations into the matter and would shortly charge the suspects to court. Muhammad, who is the prime suspect, told journalists that one of his fellow customers based in Onitsha gave him the vehicle to help him push. Isa said he needed to approach another buddy, Bamgbose, who had a valid driving licence to drive while he (Mohammed) served as a motor boy.
He explained that after getting to Nigeria, they were enroute Abeokuta, Ogun capital, to get a repair work on the vehicle before they were arrested by the police. Mohammed, who denied knowledge of the ammunition in the truck, said he might have taken the truck to Onitsha thinking it was empty.
He, however, could not provide the name of the person, who gave him the truck.
“I am 36 years old and a bus conductor. A friend called me that he has one small vehicle but I told him that I don’t have a driver’s license but I have some of my friends that may drive.
We took the vehicle from Togo and when we got to Nigeria, Seyi said the spring was too small for charcoal company and we were taking it to Abeokuta to fix the spring. “On our way, the Police stopped us and said they suspected the car.
I don’t know the owner of the motor but he usually come to Togo to buy vehicles and okirika (used fabrics ) and if he gave me the vehicle, he said I should bring it to Onitsha and call him when I get there. We were not aware that anything was hidden in the car. We thought we were driving an empty car. I have called the owner immediately we were arrested and he talked with the police,” he said.