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Scammers impersonate officer to scam Nigerians with families aboard – NDLEA

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The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency has issued a warning regarding scammers posing as officers of the agency and attempting to extort money from citizens, particularly those with loved ones residing abroad.

The Director of Media and Advocacy at NDLEA Headquarters in Abuja, Femi Babafemi, raised the alarm in a statement on Saturday. He revealed that these scammers are falsely claiming to have arrested individuals arriving in Nigeria from foreign countries with illicit drugs.

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According to Babafemi, the scammers contact unsuspecting citizens, informing them of the alleged arrest of their relatives at international airports like the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos. Subsequently, they demand large sums of money to facilitate the release of the supposed detainees from NDLEA custody.

“We have thwarted a number of such bids in the past when the family members called the Agency’s official contacts for help or clarification,” Babafemi stated.

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He recounted a recent incident involving a Nigerian man based in the United States, whose picture was circulated alongside audio recordings of a purported NDLEA officer negotiating a payment of N5 million with a family member for the man’s release. NDLEA’s investigation confirmed that this incident, like previous ones, was the work of scammers.

Babafemi emphasized that no genuine NDLEA officer was involved in the fraudulent conversation and urged affected families not to fall victim to the impersonators’ demands for money.

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The NDLEA advises the public to remain vigilant and to immediately report any suspicious communication or requests for payment from individuals claiming to represent the agency.

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