THE Tin-Can Command of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) has seized different types of military hardware and weaponry imported from the United States of America (USA) inside two different containers at the Tin-Can Island Port in Lagos.
Speaking to newsmen on Monday in Lagos, the Controller of the Tin-Can Customs Command, Comptroller Yusuf Bashar explained that the seizures were made on November 29, 2016, and the containers examined on the 30th of same month.
According to him, “we first impounded a vehicle that was discovered to have carried magazines with 10 life rounds of ammunition while our officers were discharging from a vessel. The vehicle is a used Toyota Corolla 2004 model car with chassis number 2T1BR32E54C309841.
“There are no suspects yet because we discovered this when the vehicles were just coming out of the vessel. But investigations are ongoing on the owner of the vehicle so that we can bring the culprits to book.
“Also, in a container with number MSCU718443/6 containing one used Nissan Armada 2007 model with chassis number 5NIAA08A69N709779, we discovered the following items: One Omini American tactical rifle with number AR48634; one Moaperg American Pump Action rifle with number U648018.
“In addition to these two rifles, we also discovered in the same container 3500 pieces of Premier Hollow Point Airgun pallets and another 4000 pieces of Premier Hollow Point gun pallets. There is also inside the container 26 parks of already made foods for military use.
“Nine pieces of military bullet proof vests; military helmets; military gas mask with two pairs of glasses; and two pairs of military boots. We have one suspect with us. The name of the suspect is Mr Christian Mbachi. We will be handing the suspect and all the seized military hardware to the DSS for further investigations.
“In this yuletide period, the security of this country should be paramount to everybody. Why will somebody bring in all this military hardware and ammunitions into the country, putting them inside a container tagged ‘Personal Effect Container’.
“A personal effect container does not pay duty. This is so because government wants to encourage Nigerians coming back home. So, if government has graciously granted such a waiver for Personal Effect Containers, should people abuse it by bringing in military ammunitions and hardware inside such containers?”
It would be recalled that the Tin-Can Customs Command had intercepted a container load of ready-to-eat local foods imported from India at the Tin-Can Island Port.