Three suspected thieves,have been arrested for allegedly diverting a container loaded with pharmaceutical drugs, valued at N40m, to the Igando area of the state.
PUNCH Metro gathered that the suspects ─ Emmanuel Onyike, 51; Alabi Daudu, 68; and Paul Aina, 58, were apprehended on Saturday, July 18.
According to the police, the container, which belonged to the United States Agency for International Development, was heading for a warehouse of the Society for Family Health in Sango Ota, Ogun State.
Speaking with PUNCH Metro, Daudu, a native of Abeokuta, Ogun State, said his role was to get a truck to convey the diverted container. He added that they had yet to sell any of the items before they were arrested.He said,
“Babawale was a friend, and he was the one who brought the deal. He told me he had some goods, and I should get him a truck to convey them. I knew it was stolen goods, but I did not know they were USAID drugs.
“We drove from the Tin Can Port to an area in Igando. Babawale deceived me that the truck contained household batteries. He did not let the three of us know the warehouse.
“This is the fourth operation I would be participating in. I was arrested by the SARS, Ikeja, on a case of diverting roofing sheets. I got N1.8m from the operation. I got N2m from the second. I cannot remember the third. But now, I am repentant. I have grandchildren.”
Also, Aina from Itapa, Ekiti State, and father of six children, said Daudu lured him into the act, adding that his own role was to get buyers for the goods.
He said, “I knew Daudu when we were selling clothes in Isolo. He told me there was a business he wanted us to do together. I did not have money. It was poverty that forced me to agree to the deal. The plan was to take the products to a buyer. I was asked to provide some of the buyers. I made a mistake. I don’t want to go to jail.”
Our correspondent gathered that about 500 cartons of drugs, which the container was conveying, had been recovered by the police.
It was learnt that other members of the syndicate, identified only as Ikechukwu, Babawale, Shola and Alhaji, were still at large.