- The Nigerian Customs Service (NSC) has arraigned one businessman, Ifeuwa Moses Christ, for illegally importing 1570 pump action rifles into the country
- The prosecution was carried out in a Federal High Court in Lagos and presided by a certain Justice Saliu Saidu
- The case has been adjourned till Tuesday, November 20, and Wednesday, November 21, for commencement of trial
A businessman, Ifeuwa Moses Christ, was on Thursday, October 11, arraigned before a Federal High Court in Lagos by the Nigerian Customs Service (NSC) for unlawfully importing pump action rifles
The NSC revealed that Ifeuwa allegedly imported 1570 pump action rifles concealed in a ceramic container, Nigerian Tribune reports.
Ifeuwa, a resident of 1, Ifeuwa Street, Ogidi, Anambra state, was also arraigned one Ayogu Great James, of Plot 291, Dawaki extension, opposite Gwarinpa Estate, Abuja, and Emeka Umeh Festus, (said to be in hiding) and an oil and gas company, Great James Oil and Gas Limited, located at 1, Warehouse Road, Apapa, Lagos.
Julius Ajakaiye, the prosecutor, informed the court that the accused and others conspired among themselves between Thursday, September 6, to Thursday, September 20, (2017), illegally and unlawfully import a total of 1570 pump action rifles into Nigeria, through Apapa Seaport, Lagos.
Ajakaiye further revealed to the court that Ifeuwa loaded the 1570 pump action rifles in two 1× 20 feet containers marked GESU 2555208 and CMAU 1878178.
The prosecutor told the court that the accused and others now at large, in a bid to illegally and unlawfully bring in the weapons, altered and forged a bill of lading, issued in July 2017, to read Guangdong, China, instead of Istanbul, Turkey, which was written on the conveying container.
Ajakaiye also told the court that the accused also altered Form M(application for Import) and Pre-Arrival Assessment Report (PAAR), issued in August 2017, with number MF 20170080364 and CN 20170768490/001, respectively, to read Guangdong, China instead of Istanbul, Turkey, as a country of origin.
The accused were also alleged to altered a forged bill of lading numbered ISB0281398, issued in July 2017, to read 230 packages of wash hand basin and W/C, as the content in the container used in shipping in the illegal firearms.
All the accused persons were charged before the court on charges bordering on conspiracy, illegal importation of firearms and forgery and altering of customs’ import documents. The accused had pleaded not guilty to the charges.
Justice Saliu Saidu, the presiding judge, declined to grant the defendants bail and thus adjourned the case until Tuesday, November 20, and Wednesday, November 21, for commencement of trial. The defendants were remanded in prison custody.
Meanwhile, Legit.ng reported that the federal operations unit, zone A, Ikeja of the NCS had revealed that it intercepted several contraband, including bulletproof vehicles, with a duty paid value of N2,017,953,507 between Tuesday, September 4, to Wednesday, October 3.
The seized items included 22 exotic vehicles, 11,303 bags of foreign parboiled rice (18 trailers), 2410 frozen poultry products, 853 Jerry cans of vegetable oil, 245 parcels of Indian hemp, 4 by 40 feet containers of unprocessed wood, 2,017 bales of used clothing, and 283 cartons of various pharmaceuticals all without NAFDAC registration number.
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