Suspected smugglers on Thursday abducted a Customs officer in Ogun State and also carted away arms and ammuntions.
The armed smugglers also vandalized one of the patrol vehicles before bolting away with the Customs officer identified as CA 1, Taiwo Odeyemi.
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The abducted Customs officer is said to be the driver of one of the patrol vans used to trail the smugglers.
Public Relations Officer, Ogun 1 Command, Hammed Bukoye Oloyede, who confirmed the incident said on Thursday, December 3, 2020, at about 12:10 pm, a team of officers from the Nigeria Customs Service, Ogun I Command while on routine mobile patrol along Olorunlere village, near Alapoti, Ado-Odo Ota Local Government Area of Ogun State intercepted some vehicles loaded with bags of foreign parboiled rice.
The PRO said the suspected smugglers sensing their loss on sighting the patrol team attempted to evade arrest and eventually started shooting sporadically at the officers, adding that it later resulted in serious exchange of fire between the two sides.
Oloyede said consequently, the patrol team called for re-inforcement, but before the intervention from other units, the officers were overwhelmed due to the numeric strength of the smugglers/hoodlums.
“In the ensuing commotion, the team tactically withdrew to enable the arrival of the reinforcements teams.
“On the arrival of the military personnel and other units of Customs including Federal Operations Unit (FOU) as requested by the CAC, the hoodlums had already vandalised one of the official vehicles attached to the team.
It was later discovered that an official driver, CA I (T) Taiwo J Odeyemi was missing and has not been found as at the time of writing this report.
“Investigation is ongoing and effort is being made along with other security agencies and other critical stakeholders to locate the whereabouts of the missing officer and rescue him alive” he added.
Oloyede further revealed that the CAC strongly warned smugglers and their supporters that the incessant attacks leaves Officers with no other choice than to use appropriate force to deal with these new wave of criminal attacks on personnel performing their statutory functions.
“The Command is not detered by this and will step up its offensive against those whose interest is to make profits at the expense of the nation.
“The CAC has vowed to ensure that those behind this attack face the full wrath of the law and justice,” he said.