[By VICTOR NZE]
A United Arab Emirates (UAE)-bound Nigerian passenger, identified as Ishaq Abubakar, was, Friday, nabbed at the Murtala Muhammed international airport (MMIA), Ikeja, in possession of 2,886 Automated Teller Machine (ATM) cards and four Subscriber Identification Module (SIM) cards concealed inside cartons of noodles.
The suspect was arrested by operatives of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Airport Command while attempting to board an Emirates airlines evacuation flight to Dubai, in the UAE.
Deputy Controller of Customs, MMIA Area Command, Abdulmumin Bako, who made this disclosure while handing over the suspect to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) in Lagos, said the suspect was apprehended during outward screening of passengers.
Bako said as at the time of arrest, the suspect, who identified himself as lshaq Abubakar Abubakar, was in possession of international passport number A08333717 and arrived Lagos from Kano State.
“At about 11:45 am on August 22, 2020, at the departure hall Gate “B’ of the MMIA, Abubakar with passport number A08333717 from Kano State travelling to Dubai via Emirates flight was intercepted with 2,863 ATM and four SIM cards by our officers on duty.
“The ATM cards and SIM cards were carefully concealed in noodles carton,” Bako said.
“The suspect, who claimed to have come from Kano to travel to Dubai aboard the Emirates evacuation flight, was seen with one Mr Musliu, who was assigned to facilitate his movement through the airport checks, but the diligence of our officers, who insisted on conducting a physical examination, revealed the concealment.”
The Lagos Zonal Head, EFCC, AbdulRasheed Bawa, while receiving the suspect, said the ATM cards could be used for money laundering or foreign exchange malpractices, adding that everyone involved in the conspiracy would be arrested and prosecuted by the commission.