A warehouse in Aba, Abia state where the G-Man organic energy drink is being revalidated, has been uncovered by the National Agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC, Vanguard reports.
This is coming on the heels of the arrest of six suspected counterfeiters over the importation, distribution and sale of unregistered and expired G-Man organic energy drinks in Delta and Anambra States.
According to NAFDAC investigations, the warehouse was discovered during an investigation by the Investigation and Enforcement Directorate in Asaba, Delta State.
Parading two of the suspects in Lagos during a press conference, the Director General of NAFDAC, explained that one Mr Okeke Udeze Francis was arrested with expired G-Man organic energy drink in Onitsha while Mr Uchenna Nwachi was arrested through one Mr Collins in Aba, Abia state.
She said further investigation led to the warehouse in Aba, where evidence of revalidation of the expiry date of the drink was established.
Stating that the case has been transferred to the office of the Director, Investigation and Enforcement Directorate in Lagos, Adeyeye said Mr Okeke had admitted to dealing with the product (G-Man energy drink) and stated that he got the product from one Mr Uchenna Nwachi through one Mr Collins in Aba, Abia state.
“Following this revelation, the investigation was intensified to get the other suspects arrested.”
She said further investigation revealed that the violative G-Man energy drink was manufactured in Germany and was imported into Nigeria when some of the products were already expired, and some were close to expiry (and later expired after importation).
“The expiry dates on the products when imported were 18/12/2020 and 18/12/2022. The violative products were sent to Nigeria by one Mr Paschal Emeka Udo, who is said to be based in the United Kingdom.
“Mr Wilson John who was an accomplice in the case was later arrested after we extracted a video recording of him cleaning the original date markings on the products with the intent to affix an extended date marking on the G-Man energy drink.”
The Director General who described the case as a case of food fraud, explained that Mr Uchenna Nwachi, who contracted out the revalidation of the product to Mr Wilson (a staff of the importer) was also arrested and in custody.
She said two of the suspects including the importer of the products are still at large and efforts are still on to arrest them.
She said the suspects in custody will be charged in court.
Continuing, the Director-General further disclosed that the agency also arrested a notorious drug counterfeiter of medicines and narcotic drugs merchant, Mr Emmanuel Obidike, the Managing Director of Tof match Investment Ltd, Onitsha.
She said intelligence tracking of a suspected importer of fake Basslox capsules (ampicillin 250mg + cloxacillin 250mg) lead to the arrest of the infamous counterfeit medicines and narcotics drugs importer and distributor, Mr Emmanuel Obidike.
“Painstaking surveillance and investigation on the reported case of Basslox capsules lead to the arrest of one Mr Anayo Okoye who eventually led us to Mr Emmanuel Obidike who is a notorious importer of counterfeit medicines.”
She said Obidike is known in the underworld counterfeit drugs trade as “Emma to-match”, a fallout of his criminal act of counterfeiting popular brands of drugs.
She said he was caught with some international brands of drugs, packaging materials and security materials that were recovered from the warehouse of Mr Obidike.
She said the Marketing Authorisation Holders of the international brands confirmed that the products recovered from Mr Emmanuel Obidike were not from their company and therefore were fake.
She disclosed that the two suspects have been arraigned at Federal High Court in Awka Anambra state.
Adeyeye further disclosed that the agency has sealed a warehouse housing revalidated and unregistered expired animal feeds in Abuja worth N1.9 billion.
“On the 9th of June 2023, the Investigation and Enforcement Directorate stormed a warehouse belonging to Feed Avenue Limited in the Idu Industrial area of the Federal Capital Territory following an intelligence report.
“The company, belonging to a French national was revalidating the expiry dates of expired animal feeds premix which were not registered by NAFDAC.
“The warehouse manager who was on the ground at the time of the issue gave the total value of the revalidated finished products at one billion and nine hundred million nairas (N1,900,000,000.0) only.”
She said the warehouse was sealed and the warehouse manager was arrested.