Iftikihar Arslan, a 19‑year‑old Pakistani, has been arrested by operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency, NDLEA, for attempting to smuggle 25 parcels of heroin into Nigeria.
The suspect, who claimed to be a student of Punjab College in Pakistan, was apprehended at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, MMIA, Lagos, by NDLEA operatives when the illicit drug was discovered in his luggage during inward screening of passengers on board a Qatar airline flight.
The seized drugs, which weigh 25.400kg, have an estimated street value of N228 million.
Preliminary investigation has shown that the suspect left Lahore, Pakistan with the drugs to Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, then Doha, in Qatar, from where he connected to Lagos. He is believed to be working for a Pakistani drug cartel.
Mitchell Ofoyeju, spokesman of the agency described the incident as the single largest seizure of heroin at the Lagos airport since January 2014.
Responding to the allegation, Arslan said, “I am a student of Punjab College and I am in Nigeria as a tourist because my friend told me that Victoria Island and Ikoyi are beautiful tourist centres. Unfortunately, when I arrived at the Lagos airport, the heroin was found in my luggage. This is my first time of coming to Nigeria and I had intended to spend a week or two.”