For the second time in two months, the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) on Monday said its cracked team has intercepted another massive catche of Pangolin scales valued at N1.7 billion in Lagos State.
The NCS told journalists that findings have revealed that an international cartel that specializes in the illegal trade is using Nigeria as a transit route to ferry the banned animal products across its global network.
The NCS had in August intercepted a similar cache of Pangolin scales rth 22 Billion in Lagos.
Comptroller General of Customs, Hameed Alli told correspondents that investigations are ongoing to reveal the country where the Pangolin scales are being brought in from to Nigeria.
The Customs CG, who was represented by the NCS Spokesman, Joseph Attah said: “It’s my pleasure to brief you on the success story of the Nigeria Customs Service ongoing crackdown on illegal wildlife trade.
“Even though this criminality is not essentially a Nigerian thing, sadly some foreigners with the active connivance of few Nigerians are bent on using our dear country as a transit route for illegal wildlife trade.
He explained that “You will recall that Nigeria Customs Service acting on credible intelligence provided by our international partners about two months ago, announced wildlife seizure worth over N22 Billion with arrested suspects currently facing prosecution.
“In the course of further investigation to arrest other members of the gang, we received another credible intelligence from the same international partner, WildLife Justice Commission, and swiftly deployed our intelligence operatives with the Strike Force as a SWOT team. This led to the interception of One Mercedes Benz Bus with registration number BGT 256 LG along Kudirat Abiola Way Oregun, Ikeja, Lagos.