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Interpol busts criminals at Abidjan-Lagos strip

15 February 2016, 21:43Okoro Chinedu

Lagos - The International Criminal Police Organization (Interpol) says it has unearthed criminal activities following an operation to strengthen border controls along the Abidjan-Lagos corridor.

It has confiscated drugs, stolen cars, currency, firearms and fake travel documents

This is in addition to arrests for migrant smuggling.

Six children thought to have been trafficked for child labour have been rescued.

Officials said the ten-day (26 January – 4 February) Operation Adwenpa saw more than 100 officers deployed to ten air and land border control points across five countries ‒ Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria and Togo – to conduct additional security checks against INTERPOL’s databases.

Two men who were the subject of INTERPOL Red Notices were identified – a Ghanaian national wanted by Brazil for drug trafficking was taken into custody at the Ghana/Cote d’Ivoire border, and a French national wanted for fraud and embezzlement by Benin was arrested at Abidjan’s Félix-Houphouët-Boigny International Airport.

Also Read: Jonathan's former chairman wanted by Interpol

A Ghanaian man attempting to smuggle two migrants into Togo using counterfeit travel documents was arrested, and at the Nigeria/Benin border six child victims aged between 13 and 17 who were suspected of being trafficked for labour exploitation were handed into the care of national authorities.

Nearly 900 kg of narcotics were seized including cocaine, cannabis, methamphetamine and khat.

Searches against INTERPOL’s database of stolen motor vehicles led to the recovery of seven vehicles which had been stolen in Canada, France, Germany and Italy.

Smuggled bulk cash, gold ingots and jewellery worth more than US$ 1million were also seized, as well as nearly 80 kg of trafficked ivory and a number of counterfeit passports.

Operation Adwenpa marks the final activity of the two-year Capacity Building Programme to Strengthen Border Management in West Africa, supported by the Government of Canada.

Anti-Operation Adwenpa shows the range of activities in which organized crime is involved, and law enforcement cannot look at different crime types in isolation, Michael O’Connell, INTERPOL’s Director of Operational Support and Analysis, said.

“This exercise also demonstrates the importance of using INTERPOL’s global policing capabilities, to share information and cooperate across borders.”

- CAJ News


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