Operatives of the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency have arrested a popular guitarist, Fatoke Abiodun, with 1.6kg of cocaine.
Fatoke, 62, who reportedly played the guitar for music star, King Sunny Ade, for three decades, was caught on January 1, 2013 at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, while attempting to board an Air France flight to Italy.
Mr. Hamza Umar, the NDLEA Commander at the Lagos Airport said, operatives of the agency detected two parcels of cocaine that were industrially hidden in the false bottom of the suspect’s luggage.
“We have made the first arrest in the new year. The suspect, a guitarist by name Fatoke Abiodun was found with 1.575kg of cocaine. The drug was discovered in the false bottom of his luggage during the outward screening of passengers to Italy,” he said.
The agency said the 62-year old grandfather with four wives and many children is helping narcotic investigators handling the case.
The Head, Public Affair, Mitchell Ofoyeju, disclosed that Fatoke owned up to the crime and blamed it on financial hardship.
NDLEA quoted Fatoke as saying: “I played for King Sunny Ade for 30 years before I was unceremoniously retired in 2007. I was unprepared and without severance money I saw the bitter side of life.”
He said his drug trafficking attempt is his first as he did it out of frustration.
NDLEA Chairman, Ahmadu Giade described the involvement of Fatoke in drug trafficking as sad and disappointing.
“It is sad and disappointing for a grandfather to be involved in drug trafficking. This is a bad legacy to his children. This is a good start for the agency in the year and a sign that the days ahead will be tough for drug traffickers. The agency will continue to handle every case in accordance with the NDLEA Act,” Giade was quoted as saying.
The suspect will be charged to court for unlawful exportation and possession of narcotics, NDLEA said.