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N8.8bn Tramadol: NDLEA Gets Court’s Order To Detain Suspected Billionaire Drug Baron

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The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), has secured an order from the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos to detain an alleged billionaire drug baron, Nsofor Kennedy Ugochukwu, a.k.a, Ugochukwu Nsofor Chukwukadibia, in its custody for a period of 14 days, pending the conclusion of ongoing investigation.

Justice Akintayo Aluko on Thursday granted NDLEA’s prayers in an ex parte application filed and moved by its prosecutor, Umar Hussain, seeking to empower the agency to remand the defendant in its custody for an initial period of 14 days.

NDLEA had approached the court with the motion ex parte supported with an affidavit deposed to by one Kareem Olayinka Musibau, a litigation officer attached to the agency’s Directorate of Prosecution and Legal Services.

In the affidavit, NDLEA claimed that the respondent  was arrested at Plot-2-130, Road 67 VGC Housing Estate, along Epe Expressway, Lagos, on September 30, 2022, in connection to the seizure of 10,598 kilograms of tramadol, while allegedly dealing and conspiring to distribute same to his associates in Nigeria and other parts of the world.

The deponent claimed that the respondent is an illicit drug baron operating a drug trafficking organisation, in collaboration with his associates in Nigeria and other parts of the world. And that the court has the powers under the law to make the orders sought on the motion paper.

The deponent averred that it would serve the interest of justice if his application was granted.

Justice Aluko after listening to the submission made by the NDLEA lawyer, and cited pleth­ora of authorities, held that: “The application is meritorious and same is hereby granted”.

NDLEA’s Director, Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, had in a statement said fol­lowing credible intelligence, NDLEA operatives on Friday, September 30, stormed the Plot A45, Road 2 home of the 52-year-old billionaire drug kingpin.

He stated that a search of the expansive mansion led to the discovery of 443 cartons of tramadol hydrochloride 225mg, which contains 13,451,466 pills of the drug while some cartons were already burnt in a fire in­cident in the house same day.

“Before his arrest, Ugochuk­wu who hails from Ihiala Local Government Area of Anambra State has been on the agency’s watch list as one of those be­hind the tramadol drug cartel in Nigeria.”

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