Lagos - The Western Marine Command of the Nigeria Customs Service on Thursday in Lagos paraded five foreign nationals suspected to be part of those dealing in smuggled petroleum products in Nigeria.
The command’s Controller, Yusuf Umar, told newsmen that the suspects, all nationals of the Republic of Benin, were intercepted on the high sea with 114 empty drums in their wooden boat.
He said the timely interception prevented their action which, he noted, must have been taking place before now.
"We intercepted a wooden boat manned by foreign nationals from the Republic of Benin in our shores apparently with a mission of bunkering petroleum products out of the country.
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"We collaborated with the Nigerian Navy to effect this arrest and we are today handing them over to the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) for prosecution as directed by the Comptroller General of Customs,’’ Umar said.
Also speaking, the Lagos State Commandant of NSCDC, Gabriel Abafi, commended the Western Marine Command for synergising with the agency to carry the state duty.
He said the collaborative effort was paying off to make the illegal act unsuccessful for perpetrators.
On hand at the parade also was the Commander, NNS Beecroft, Commodore Abraham Adaji, who condemned the act of petroleum product theft in Nigeria.
He also commended the customs command, saying the suspects would be prosecuted appropriately.