Nigeria - Drug Enforcement Agency Fines

January 2008

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BIMCO has recently alerted its members to several incidents of disproportionate fines imposed by the Nigerian Drug Enforcement Agency (NDEA) at Port Tin Can and Port Lagos. Agency officers search private cabins in an attempt to find anything that might serve as a pretext for imposing a fine. Extortionate fines are then reduced after lengthy discussions and payment is made in cash. No receipts are issued. A "fine" of US$ 90,000 (reduced to US$1,300) was imposed for a food item which was out of date, US$400 (approx) for an empty tube of eye ointment which was found in the garbage (NDEA officers maintained that there was some ointment left) and US$3,000 (reduced to US$300) for medicine found without prescription.

BIMCO is urging its members to report any similar incidents to the BIMCO secretariat.