• Drug group hails NDLEA, Police for prompt action
The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) has confirmed the arrest of the suspended ‘Super Cop’ DCP Abba Kyari and four others.
Kyari, a highly decorated police officer in Nigeria was arrested following accusations he belongs to an international drugs cartel, police say.
The “Super Cop” is already suspended for allegedly helping self-avowed fraudster Hushpuppi to launder his money in the US, is now accused in a cocaine plot.
Officials said Kyari asked a colleague to help him siphon off part of a cocaine haul.
They said he was caught on camera handing over $61,400 (£45,400) in cash.
The Director, Media and Advocacy, NDLEA, Mr Femi Babafemi, who confirmed Kyari’s arrest in a statement in Abuja, on Monday, said he was taking into custody a few hours after he was declared wanted by the agency over his involvement in a 25 kilograms Cocaine deal.
He confirmed that the Nigerian Police Force has handed over the suspended DCP Abba Kyari, the erstwhile Commander of Intelligence Response Team (IRT) at the Force Intelligence Bureau of the Nigerian Police Force, to the anti-narcotic agency.
“Five of the wanted suspects namely: DCP Abba Kyari; ACP Sunday J. Ubua; ASP Bawa James; Inspector Simon Agirgba and Inspector John Nuhu were driven into the National Headquarters of NDLEA in Abuja.
“This was about 5:00 p m. on Monday, Feb. 14 to formally hand them over for interrogation and further investigation.
“The Agency wishes to assure that no stone will be left unturned.
“This is to ensure that all suspects already in custody and those that may still be indicted in the course of the investigation will face the full weight of the law at the end of the ongoing probe,” he said.
One-time ‘Super Cop’
Mr Kyari, 46, once had a reputation of being a “super cop” who investigated big criminal cases.
He received a presidential medal of courage from Mr Buhari in 2016 after his team rescued three kidnapped schoolgirls in Lagos.
He was also honoured by the Lagos State government, winning the top award for gallantry three years in a row between 2011 and 2013, and he was known for fraternising with politicians and celebrities.
But he was suspended from the force in August last year after the US instituted indictment proceedings against him, following allegations that he facilitated payments to Nigerian police personnel from Instagram celebrity Hushpuppi – whose real name is Ramon Abbas.
Meanwhile, the Vanguard Against Drug Abuse, (VGADA) a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) has lauded the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) for declaring DCP Abba Kyari wanted over alleged links to drug trafficking.
The President, VGADA, Dr Hope Omeiza, said this in a statement on Monday in Abuja.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that NDLEA spokesperson, Femi Babafemi, at a press briefing on Monday in Abuja on Monday, had chronicled how Kyari belonged to a drug cartel that operates the Brazil-Ethiopia-Nigeria illicit drug pipeline.
NAN also reports that the suspended former head of the Nigerian Police Intelligence Response Team (IRT) was arrested few hours by the police alongside four others after the NDLEA declared him wanted.
Omeiza appreciated the effort of the Inspector General of Police (IGP) Usman Alkali for prompt response on the immediate arrest of the suspects.
He recalled that Kyari was indicted in 2021 by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the United States for his alleged role in a 1million dollar scam.
This scam, he said, was allegedly perpetrated by alleged international Internet fraudster Ramon Abbas, aka, Hushpuppi and five others.
According to him, thanks to the NDLEA for declaring Kyari wanted for drug trafficking offences in the face of “glaring and incontrovertible evidence”.
“We appreciate the Police as well for immediate response to NDLEA‘s briefing and this has showed total transparency and commitment to the country’s safety,” he said.
Omeiza urged the Police Service Commission to dismiss Kyari and others in connection to the drug trafficking, adding that the NDLEA officer that exposed the suspect be promoted.
He commended the officer for transparency and truthfulness in carrying out his duty and ensuring that efforts to rid the country of drug peddling were achieved.
Omeiza however, reiterated the organisation’s commitment to working with NDLEA and other stakeholders to curb illicit drug abuse and trafficking to the barest minimum.