Officers of Ogun Area Command II of the Nigeria Customs Service, NCS, said they impounded a bullion van with N24 million cash for smuggling 12 bags of foreign parboiled rice.
The bullion van was owned by Warehouse Ltd., while the money belonged to Access Bank PLC Abeokuta Branch.
According to the command’s area controller, Olusola Alade, the bullion van, impounded in April 2022 by a joint task force, was used to convey 12 bags of smuggled rice, each weighing 50kg.
The customs boss disclosed this to journalists on Friday while handing over the bullion van and the money to bank officials in Abeokuta, the state capital.
According to him, the release of the van, as well as the money, to the management of Access Bank, was ordered by Controller General of Customs Bashir Adewale Adeniyi on compassionate grounds.
He added that three suspects were arrested and charged in court in connection with the crime.
His words: “On April 22, 2022, officers and men of the joint border patrol team at the Olorunda axis of Ogun State intercepted the used bullion van with Reg. No. FKY 993 BZ, found to have concealed some bags of foreign parboiled rice and N24, 489,500, along the Sokoto-Ijoun/Joga Road, Abeokuta axis of Ogun State.”
The Customs boss explained that the foreign parboiled rice, 12 bags of 50kg each, were criminally concealed in said bullion van.
Upon the arrest of the suspects, the money was deposited at the Abeokuta branch of the Central Bank of Nigeria for safekeeping.