Exercise Crocodile Smile 2: Lagos/Ogun produce drug peddlers, pipeline vandals


Joy Anyim

The flag off of the Exercise Crocodile Smile II in the 81 Division Area of responsibility by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai, has led to the arrest of some suspected criminals within Lagos and Ogun states.

Recall that the exercise which flagged off on Friday had incorporated other Security and Para – Military agencies in the areas mainly to fight any form of criminality, give free medical care amongst others.

According to a statement by the Spokesperson for the Division, Acting Deputy Director Army Public Relations, Lieutenant Colonel Olaolu Daudu, the arrested suspects included drug peddlers, cultists, car snatchers and other criminal elements whose arrest is a product of the rigorous patrols, raids, road blocks and checkpoints mounted by the Army.

Giving a breakdown of the successes of the exercise, the statement reveals, “On Wednesday, October 4, 2017, based on credible information on the activities of pipeline vandals at Ronik Hotel Agbule Egba area of Lagos state, troops of 149 Battalion, 81 Division Nigerian Army were immediately dispatched for a Cordon and search Operation.

“The troops arrested the suspected pipeline vandals and items found within the hotel premises includes 16 loaded kegs of premium motor spirit (PMS), 5 cars and 2 tankers loaded with PMS.The suspects have been interrogated, profiled and handed over to NSCDC.

“In a related development, on Wednesday, October 11, 2017, troops of 174 Battalion, 81 Division Nigerian Army while on a stop and search operation arrested a car robber who snatched a Toyota Venza with reg no. FST 762 CV along Ikorodu – Sagamu road. The suspect who was fleeing with the stolen vehicle rammed into other vehicles and pedestrians in a bid to escape and was arrested by troops. The suspect and the recovered vehicle have been handed over to Owutu Divisional police Headquarters,” he said.

Speaking on the other achievements of the exercise, the statement also revealed that on October 14th, 2017, following a tip off troops of Sector 5, 243 Battalion at Agbara area in conjunction with men of NDLEA carried out a raid operation at Oto-Awori and apprehended 5 drug peddlers with gallons of unidentified chemical substances and Indian hemp.

The arrested suspects and recovered items have been handed over to the NDLEA for further investigation.

In a similar activity, raid and clearance operations were also carried out by troops of 65 Battalion Sector 1 of Exercise Crocodile Smile II at Ajah. Nine suspects were arrested with bags containing Indian hemp. Two (2) of the suspects were alleged to have snatched a female purse containing a Samsung Galaxy and Itel phones, Bible, house keys and the sum of N1,200, which were recovered.

The statement disclosed further, “another raid operation was also carried out by troops of 9 Brigade Garrison Sector 4 at Ipodo, Ikeja general area. Five suspected fraudsters were arrested and items recovered include four generators, four laptops, scanning machine, colour printer, three stabilizers, ten ups, three car chargers and 16 handsets stand. The suspects and exhibits have been handed over to Lagos State Special Task force, Oshodi.

“On Sunday October 15, 2017, the Commander Sector 3 of Exercise Crocodile Smile II, Lt Col BC Eze handed over 36 suspects arrested by troops of the Sector during a raid operation at criminal hideouts and notorious drug dens in Ikorodu. The handover was carried out at Odogunyan barracks in Ikorodu and the suspects were received by the Area Commander Nigeria Police Ijede – Ikorodu.

” Also On Sunday October 15, 2017, at about 11.59 pm, gunmen suspected to be cultists attacked Rolex Hotel in Ajara area of Badagry. Following a distress call to troops of 243 Battalion Sector 5 on Exercise Crocodile Smile II on activities of suspected cultists, troops responded immediately and arrested 4 suspected cultists. Also on a follow up of suspected cultists attack, two suspects were arrested in connection with previous attacks at Rolex Hotel.

“The arrested suspects were detained and preliminary investigation is in progress while suspects would be handed over to relevant security agencies for further investigation and prosecution,” he stated.

The headquarters 81 Division Nigerian Army therefore reassured the public that it is poised to maintain peace and security in the entire Lagos and Ogun State.

Members of the public were requested to cooperate with security agencies by remaining law abiding and giving credible information to the nearest security check point or call 193 and the various telephone numbers that were earlier made public.

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Ihesiulo Grace

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