On Wednesday, June 5, 2024, agents of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, or NDLEA, conducted a raid on the Emerald Hotel in the Ladipo neighborhood of Oshodi, Lagos State. There, they discovered that some individuals who were planning to perform the hajj in Saudi Arabia were staying there and were in the process of consuming wraps of cocaine prior to their departure for the sacred land.

The agency’s spokesperson, Femi Babafemi, released a statement stating that the following people were detained during the intelligence-led operation: Usman Kamorudeen, 31, Olasunkanmi Owolabi, 46, Fatai Yekini, 38, and a woman, Ayinla Kemi, 34. When NDLEA agents entered the two rooms where the four suspects were being held, they had already prepared 200 cocaine pellets, totaling 2.20 kg, for ingestion.

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One hundred wraps of the Class A substance were recovered from each of the two rooms bringing the total seizure to 200 wraps. Two suspects were to swallow 100 wraps each.

Commending the Commander, officers and men of the Lagos state Command of NDLEA, which conducted the operation, Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of the Agency, Brig Gen Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) said the agency will continue to spread its dragnet to track, trace and apprehend criminal elements who may want to hide under pilgrimage to carry out their nefarious activities capable of denting the image of the country.

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The NDLEA boss also stated that “the Agency will work with our counterparts in Saudi Arabia to ensure that the designated recipients of seized illicit drug consignments in any part of Saudi Arabia are also traced and dealt with accordingly.”