Officials of the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS attached to Tin Can Island Command, Lagos on Friday intercepted a 1×40 ft container carrying guns that had been declared as plasma television sets.
It was also learnt that customs officers at the Command later discovered it to contain cartons of guns.
A source disclosed that the consignment was sublet to a clearing agent by another, fuelling suspicion that the agent must have been aware of the content.
The Public Relations Officer of the Tin Can Customs, Mr Uche Ejesieme, confirmed the development, saying that the container of guns was discovered during a routine examination at terminal B2 (Vehicle) of the TICT.
“The officers intercepted a container loaded with weapons, but as we speak, what we have done as a Command, is that we have written to the terminal to evacuate the container immediately to enforcement unit for 100 per cent examination, so that we can actually ascertain the quantity and other relevant information.
“So, as we speak, we expect the terminal to evacuate the container to the enforcement unit where we intend to strip it, and the quantity, names of people involved and other further information would be available,” he said of the imported guns cased as television sets at the Lagos port.
He added that, in line with service protocol, the Command would inform the Customs high command in Abuja after the container had been thoroughly examined at the enforcement unit of the command.
“This is why we have not issued an official statement regarding the seizure.
“As we speak, we do not have full details of who is behind the import, country of import and the model of guns.
“All these will be made known at the end of investigations,” he added.
The customs, however, vowed to trace the matter to its very roots and apprehend those in connection.
“Most times, the suspect you see is those freight forwarders and agents coming for examination, but we are more interested in getting to the importer and everyone involved in that criminal importation to nip it in the bud,” he assured of the imported guns that were declared as plasma television sets.
Source: Daily Trust