Cocaine Trafficking: Edo Politician Gets Bails
Justice Mohammed Liman of the Federal High Court Ikoyi Lagos has granted bail to Edo State House of Assembly 2011 hopeful, Eme Zuru Ayortor a.k.a. Paul Osimele Shegee who pleaded not guilty to a one count charge of unlawful exportation of 2.120kg of cocaine brought against him on Wednesday June 2, 2010 by the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA). His bail application was granted in the sum of one million naira and two sureties with landed property within the jurisdiction of the court. The case had been adjourned to July 21, 2010 for trial.
The 52 year old pharmacist Eme Zuru Ayortor was intercepted at the centre screening area of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos with the aid of scanning machine while attempting to export 2.120kg of cocaine in his stomach to Frankfurt. Eme who was to board a Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt is one of the high profile suspects nabbed by anti-narcotic officials at the airport in recent times.
After undergoing observation, the pharmacist turned politician excreted 100 pieces of powdery substance that tested positive to cocaine weighing 2.120kg. The quantity also makes him the highest drug ingesting suspect since January 2010. He claimed to have relied on his physique and social status to evade arrest but the stratagem was not successful. Preliminary check on him revealed that he was preparing himself financially for the forthcoming election into the Edo State House of Assembly.
Meanwhile, Chairman/Chief Executive of the NDLEA Ahmadu Giade in his reaction to the judgement on his bail application assured Nigerians that the bail is not the end of the case. “This is one of our celebrated cases and getting bail is not the end. What is important is that justice will be clearly seen by all stakeholders to have been done” Giade assured.
Eme taught at Baptist High School Benin City before going to the United States where he studied pharmacy at the University of Wisconsin. He returned to Nigeria in 2006 and the following year he contested for a seat at the Edo State House of Assembly but he lost. NDLEA Airport commander Alhaji Hamza Umar said that the case is under investigation and that follow-up operation on the case has been positive. “A follow-up operation into the case is yielding very positive result and at the appropriate time more facts shall be released to the public” Hamza stated.
According to the suspect, “I contested the 2007 House of Assembly election in Edo State and lost. I also lost all my savings as a practising pharmacist in that election. Now, the coast is clear and I am being favoured to run in 2011 in my party. That was how I got involved in this mess. I needed to reposition myself for the 2011 election financially. I thought that with my position and appearance, there will be no problem at the screening. I do not know where to start from here” Eme who hails from Orhionmhon Local Government Area of the State lamented.
It will be recalled that the NDLEA had arrested a doctorate degree holder, an ex-counsellor and a family at the Lagos airport. The suspect will soon be charged to court.
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