The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has secured the conviction of a 13 years jail term for a 34-year-old South American man from Suriname, Dadda Lorenzo Harvy Albert.
The anti-narcotic agency also has secured the conviction of 1,445 drug traffickers in six months.
The announcement was contained in a statement issued on Wednesday by the agency’s Director of Media and Advocacy, Femi Babafemi, in Abuja.
Albert was arrested by the NDLEA operatives at the Port Harcourt International Airport, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, with 117 parcels of cocaine concealed in an extra-large latex condoms factory packed inside bottles of 100ml body spray.
Following his arrest, he was arraigned before Justice E.A. Obile of the Federal High Court 2, Port Harcourt, on June 1 on two counts of importation and unlawful possession of 9.9kgs cocaine in charge number FHC/PH/181C/23.
The Surinamese pleaded guilty to the two-count charge and, after reviewing the facts of the case on Thursday, July 20, was convicted and sentenced to 13 years imprisonment on both counts without an option of fine.
Justice Obile also ordered the forfeiture of $90 and R$10 recovered from the convict at the time of his arrest to the Federal Government. The court equally refused the application by Lorenzo’s Counsel for him to be deported to his country.
Babafemi noted that the successful prosecution and conviction of Lorenzo is one of the One Thousand Four Hundred and Forty-Five (1,445) drug cases concluded at the Federal High Court across the country between January and June 2023 by the Directorate of Prosecution and Legal Services of NDLEA with the trial of a total of 11,166 other drug suspects ongoing in court.
He said, ”Out of the 1,445 convicts, 221 of them are femaleS while 1,541 are maleS. Of the 11,166 pending cases, 10,626 are men, while the rest, 540, are women.
”The 1,445 convicts and 11,166 suspects who are still facing trial were arrested and charged to court over the seizure of 555,953.70 kilograms of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, cannabis, tramadol, and others linked to them between January and June 2023.”
Reacting to the development, the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd) commended officers and men of the prosecution department for a job well done.
Marwa charged them to remain committed to the diligent prosecution of all pending court cases, adding that conviction and sentencing without the option of fine is a strong deterrence to offenders and anyone contemplating going into any crime.
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