Customs at MMAC seizes wild life parts, arrests Chinese national
.Says suspect must face prosecution
.Impounds 99 bags of donkey skin
By Udeme Clement
The Customs Area Controller, CAC, Murtala Mohammed Area Command, MMAC, of Nigeria Customs Service ,NCS, Comptroller Shoboiki Jayne (Mrs,) Phd, has said that the Chinese National, identified as Mr. Liu Hiu, arrested with bags of wild life parts (pangolin scales), while trying to smuggle the items out of the country, against government’s policy on preservation of these parts must be prosecuted according to the law.
The CAC made this declaration while parading the suspect before news men at the Command, stressing that the prosecution of this suspect will serve as a deterrent to others.
Comptroller Shoboiki further disclosed that her Command also seized additional eight bags of elephant tusks, 21 bags of pangolin scales and 99 bags of unprocessed donkey skin, which she displayed at the warehouse before Journalists.
Speaking further, the CAC expressed displeasure on illegal smuggling of wild life parts out of the country, saying it is a crime that must be curbed in all ramifications.
Responding to questions on how her officers were able to track the suspect when he was already at the International airport, about leaving Nigeria for China, she explained, “We got the information that the suspect was already at International Airport, we acted immediately and got him arrested.”
She went on, “Upon interrogation, the suspect confessed committing the crime. According to the suspect, he acted on the instruction of his boss in China, who sent him to smuggle the wild life parts. The people in China are aware that trafficking these items is a crime. That is why the main culprits do not come by themselves, instead, they often send their junior workers to smuggle these items. Sometimes, when these junior ones are caught, they do not care what happens to them”.
Talking before Customs officers and news men, the suspect regretted the crime, saying he was not well informed by his boss in China that wild life parts are prohibited items. He said, his boss in China warned him not to return from Nigeria to China without the items.
On the next step to be taken, the CAC said, “The suspect and the items will be handed over to National Environmental Standards and Regulations Enforcement Agency, NESREA, for further action. Ignorance is not an excuse for breaking the law of any country. Therefore, we must do our work in line with the policies of government, in order to protect our economic environment”.
This is the second segment of this report, as we promised.