A desperate woman who thought she had found love via Facebook did not know that the man was using her as a drug mule.
For Uju Gloria Ezeabata, a 37-year-old accountant with an accounting firm in Lagos State, the desire to get married has put her in trouble after a man she met and dated on social media, Facebook, has landed her in trouble after it turned out that he was only using her as his drug mule.
Ezeabata who was arrested by officials of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA), with 1.325kg of methamphetamine at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) in Ikeja, was on her way to Malaysia to visit the man who had proposed to marry her on Facebook, thinking she was going there to meet her fiance.
However, investigations by the anti-drug agency showed that Ezeabata, who was recruited on facebook, was being used by the drug cartel as a mule to the drug to Malaysia. The cartel’s suspected leader, Philip Maduabuchi Akpaka, 39, was also arrested.
During interrogation, Ezeabata said she was deceived by a man she thought loved her and really wanted to marry her.
“I met a man on Facebook some months ago; he lives in Malaysia. He told me while chatting online that he is from my state, Anambra. After some months, he proposed to marry me and I requested that he comes to Nigeria to meet my parents as our custom demands.
He promised to fulfil every marriage rite. Months later, he invited me to Malaysia, promising to pay all the travel expenses. After several appeals, I decided to visit him.
The day I was to travel, he told me to take along a bag of foodstuff sent by his mother from the village. I was given the bag at the airport but in the process of checking it, drug was discovered inside packs of noodles in the bag and I was arrested.”
The Lagos Airport Commander of the NDLEA, Ahmadu Garba, while commenting on Ezeabata's arrest, said:
“Gloria was arrested during screening of passengers on an Ethiopian airline flight on her way to Malaysia at the departure hall. Substances that tested positive for methamphetamine weighing 1.325kg were detected in her luggage.
The drug was concealed in 26 packs of Indomie noodles in a bag of foodstuff containing plantain, pepper, melon and other spices. Further investigation led to the arrest of Akpaka, who allegedly coordinated the travel arrangement for Gloria and gave her the bag containing the drugs.”
The cartel’s suspected leader, Akpaka admitted preparing Uju's travel papers at the instance of his Malaysia-based friend.
“I am a transporter. My friend in Malaysia asked me to prepare travel documents for Ezeabata. He also asked me to give her a bag to take to Malaysia.”