DHL ‘New Drug Haven’?

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Despite efforts by the Government to prevent the country from falling into the hands of drug peddlers, global currier service provider, DHL- Liberia has been providing “safe haven” to smuggle illicit narcotic drugs into Liberia, a court indictment has declared.

The government recently indicted four persons including two DHL-Liberia employees of the entity for their respective roles in the importation of 484.4 grams of heroin, valued as US$14,532.

The substance was confiscated by officers of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) at the Broad Street offices of DHL in early July 2015.

Although employees of the company were indicted, DHL itself is not among those to stand trial for multiple crimes, which include unlicensed importation of controlled drug substances, unlicensed sale, administration, trading, disposition, delivery, distribution, dispatch in transit, and transpiration of controlled drug or substance.

Those named in the indictment include Comfort Weah, Charles Akaolisa and Uche Ude (Nigerian), as well as Gabriel Doe and Andrew Nah, both employees of the DHL.

They are expected to appear before Judge Emery Paye of Criminal Court ‘C’ on Tuesday to answer to the indictment as to whether or not they are guilty of the commission of those crimes.

In the indictment drawn-up by the Grand Jury for Montserrado, the government alleges that acting upon intelligence, a package bearing waybill number 5505590814, and containing the illegal drug, was brought from Kampala, Uganda, to Liberia through the DHL, addressed to Comfort Weah.

The document further alleges that based on the intelligence, officers of the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) quickly ran to the DHL office, where defendant Weah had gone to take delivery of her package.

Unfortunately, the court records claimed, Comfort received a warning from some unknown callers that DEA officers were posted to apprehend her, and she fled the area. In the process, she left behind her hand bag that contained her identification card, which aided DEA officers to trace and arrest her on August 8, 2015 in the Jamaica Road Community on Bushrod Island.

The indictment said, the package that came through DHL contained assorted hair accessories and the 484.4 grams of heroine in 28 packs of UV whitening crème with a market value of US$14,532.

“Defendant Charles Akaolisa, with criminal mind to import the dangerous drug into Liberia, contacted Uche Ude so that the drug could be sent to his (Ude) fiancée, Comfort Weah, to minimize suspicion,” the court records said.

“Ude encouraged and convinced defendant Weah to give her name and telephone number to have them placed on the package, which she did.

“As for defendants Doe and Nah, who are employees of the DHL, they agreed and assisted Akaolisa to clear the dangerous substance, for which they charged Akaolisa US$1,000 to enable them to help defendant Weah to take custody of her package.”

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