Two persons standing trial before Justice Saliu Seidu of the Federal High Court Ikeja for breaking Nigeria Customs Seal has been remanded in Ikoyi Prison pending the fulfillment of their bail conditions. The suspects Fares Chawich and Emmanuel Ekong were charged to federal High Court sitting in Ikeja by the Nigeria Customs Service federal Operation Unit Zone Ikeja for tampering with the customs seal placed on five vehicles kept in their premises for clearing discrepancies.
Public Relations Officers, Mr. Tuche Ejesieme,in a statement said “the two accused person Fares Chawich and Emmanuel Ekong were charged to federal High Court sitting in Ikeja for tampering with the customs seal placed on five vehicles kept in their premises for clearing discrepancies. The accused were charged on a five count charge bordering on intent to defraud the Federal Government of unpaid duty totaling about N230,964,169. The spokesperson who quoted the controller, Mr. Turaki Usman Adamu in the statement made available to our correspondent yesterday, “ stated that the FOU was compelled to expediently charge the accused persons to court following the illegal act of breaking Customs seal in violation of Section 145(5) of the Customs and Excise management Act Cap C45 laws of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 2004.
The Controller noted that it was discovered that the exotic vehicles parked in the premises of the accused in Ikeja GRA were grossly undervalued in clear violation of the Federal Government import policy. According to him, the vehicles recovered from the accused persons were Brabus G800 Model 2013 chassis No 212718, Maybach625 Model2009 chassis No. 002513, Mclaren SLR model2009 chassis No. 001960, and Aston Martin Model2009, chassis No.815026. The spokesperson further said,“That the Unit had written a letter to the accused following information them that the vehicles did not comply with standard import procedures.
He said “in line with Service procedure and in our quest to recover appropriate duty accruable to the vehicles, placed them on Customs seal after raising a detention notice which the accused who stood as surety had undertaken to pay.” instead of the first accused coming forward for regularization of duty, it broke the seal and removed the vehicles. The statement said, the total amount of outstanding duty from the vehicles stands at N232,964,169 only.