Customs impounds bank?s bullion van
By Chris Iwarah
Sunday, December 05, 2010
The Seme Border Command of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) has seized a bulletproof bullion van of a first-generation bank allegedly used for smuggling frozen food across the border.
The Customs Area Controller, Comptroller Kura Maitama, said the command also foiled a desperate attempt by smugglers to use a waste truck belonging to Lagos Waste Management Authority (LAWMA) to convey new textile materials across the border undetected.
Condemning the new trend of using vehicles belonging to reputable organisations and government agencies for illegal trade practices, Maitama said he was surprised that despite the seriousness of the issue, the management of bank was yet to respond to the seizure of their armoured van with Lagos registration number JR 958 EKY.
The LAWMA truck marked 1824 (M051-N), over which Maitama said they have a suspect in custody, was conveying new textile materials.
Speaking on other seizures made by the command, including a truck conveying over 300 cartons of drugs with a duty paid value of over N38 million, Maitama warned smugglers to stay away from the border as they would be exposed by his men.
He said with the approaching festive season, the border would confront greater challenges from smugglers and other unpatriotic Nigerians, but assured that his command was capable of handling the situation.
To ensure adequate manpower for the expected festivity-pushed smuggling activities, Maitama said he had not only recalled officers on leave, but also deferred the leave of others who are due for it.