NDLEA arrests wanted Abuja drug kingpin, seven years after escape from prison


• Another nabbed in Ondo after jumping bail since 2022
● As Agency recovers 63,767.3kgs of cannabis, 82,320 pills of opioids in raids across 8 states

In a significant breakthrough, operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) have successfully apprehended Ibrahim Momoh, widely known as Ibrahim Bendel, a notorious drug dealer who had escaped prison custody seven years ago.

Momoh, a major distributor of illicit substances within the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, was arrested during a recent raid on his hideout at Filin Dabo, Dei-Dei area of the FCT.

According to an official statement released by Femi Babafemi, the Director of Media and Advocacy at NDLEA Headquarters in Abuja, Ibrahim Momoh had initially been arrested on November 27, 2014, with 385.1 kilograms of cannabis sativa.

Subsequently, he was prosecuted, convicted, and sentenced to seven and a half years in prison on July 22, 2015.

However, Momoh managed to escape from prison custody on May 16, 2016, while serving his sentence at Kuje.

Acting on credible intelligence, NDLEA operatives conducted a raid on Momoh’s warehouse on November 20, 2022, recovering 1,278 kilograms of cannabis stored in 81 jumbo bags.

The warehouse, located within Momoh’s poultry farm in Dei-Dei, was managed by a 55-year-old Ghanaian, Richard Forson Gordon, who was subsequently arrested, prosecuted, and sentenced to two years in jail.

Following the raid, Momoh was declared wanted by the agency.

The relentless pursuit of Ibrahim Momoh culminated in his arrest on November 5, 2023, during another raid on his hideout in Filin Dabo, Dei-Dei, Abuja.

At the time of his arrest, Momoh was found in possession of 56.9 kilograms of cannabis sativa and 42.7 grams of Diazepam.

Additionally, a separate raid in the same area on November 13 led to the arrest of Yusufa Ibrahim, 27, with 75.3 kilograms of cannabis.

In a parallel operation in the forest of Efon Alaye in Efon local government area of Ekiti state on November 18, 2023, NDLEA successfully destroyed 52,500 kilograms of cannabis sativa covering over 21 hectares of farmland.

Ninety-two bags of the substance, weighing 1,380 kilograms, were recovered, and an additional 250 bags, weighing 3,000 kilogrammes, were destroyed in huts on the farm.

Fifteen suspects were apprehended during the operation.

Similar successes were recorded in Ondo state, where five individuals, including the wanted drug kingpin Christopher Onyebuchi, were arrested at New Bridge Compound, Idoani, on November 15.

A total of 1,945 kilograms of cannabis were seized from the suspects.

Notably, Onyebuchi had previously been arrested by NDLEA on March 25, 2022, but had jumped bail after being arraigned at the Federal High Court, Akure.
In Sokoto, NDLEA operatives recovered 290 kilogrammes of cannabis from a female suspect, Fatima Salmanu, 20, in Gangaren Tashar, Illela Sokoto, on November 16. Meanwhile, in Edo state, 808 kilograms of cannabis were evacuated from a forest at Igueben on November 13.

Other significant seizures and arrests were made in Kwande council area of Benue state, Ogun state, Lagos, and Imo state.

These operations resulted in the recovery of substantial amounts of cannabis and the apprehension of multiple suspects involved in drug trafficking.

The NDLEA’s War Against Drug Abuse (WADA) advocacy campaign continued with various activities across the country, including lectures for Muslim faithful, sensitization lectures for students, and advocacy lectures in schools, markets, and worship places.

Commending the efforts of NDLEA officers across multiple commands, Brig. Gen. Mohamed Buba Marwa (Retd), Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of NDLEA, urged them to intensify their offensive actions against drug cartels as the yuletide season approaches, while maintaining a balance with their drug demand reduction efforts.

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