The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency has said it has arrested one of two brothers, Onyeaghalachi Stephen, notorious as major sources of illicit drug supplies in the South-East and South-South regions of the country, after nine years of being on his trail.
The Chairman of the NDLEA, Brig. Gen. Buba Marwa (retd.), had asked the fleeing baron to turn himself in before the anti-narcotics agency caught up with him.
Marwa commended the officers and men of the agency involved in the operation as well as men of the military who supported them for their professionalism.
The agency’s Director, Media and Advocacy, Mr. Femi Babafemi, noted that Onyeaghalachi’s elder brother, Eze Stephen, who is also wanted, narrowly escaped during the overnight operation carried out simultaneously in their two locations in Umuahia and Ntigha Okpuola communities in Isiala Ngwa North LGA, Abia State.
Babafemi said during the raid, quantities of cocaine and variants of cannabis were recovered from the two houses while the agency had so far sealed two hotels, one eatery, two mansions linked to them and recovered three exotic vehicles from their homes as efforts were ongoing to trace more of their bank accounts and properties.
The identified hotels include: Jahlove Hotel, Mbawsi, Isiala Ngwa North LGA; Noicyhl Luxury Hotel, Aba -Port-Harcourt expressway, Aba and Royal Cruise Fast Food, Enugu- Port Harcourt expressway, Isiala Ngwa North LGA, all in Abia State.
Babafemi also revealed that investigations showed that the two notorious brothers began a career in the illicit drug business since the late 90s when they started as pocket dealers before they later established smoking joints/bunks in their community, Ntigha Okpuola, and subsequently grew to become barons; owning hotels, houses in choice areas of Abia, Rivers and Imo States, with exotic cars in their homes.
He added that fresh bid to bring the duo to book and end their criminal trade was launched four months ago, leading to a simultaneous raid operation on their locations on Saturday, November 26, 2022.
He said, “The NDLEA has been on their trail since 2013 when they organised a mob attack on some of the agency’s operatives who attempted to apprehend them during a raid. At least, one of the officers attacked then is still bedridden till date.