The Officers of the Nigeria byImmigration Service(NIS)at the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport(MMA), Lagos, today apprehended two girls, Adebayo Kolapo Kazeem and Babalola Kehinde, who were attempted to board a Cairo- bound Egypt Airline flight with tampered passports.
According to a statement signed by the Service Public Relations Officer(PRO), Deputy Comptroller of Immigration (DCI), Sunday James said they were detected when the Migration Information and Data Analysis System (MIDAS) used for scanning their passports refused clearing the tampered passports due to an imposed fake identity of the true holder.
He stated that the two girls were duly subjected to interrogation when caught against their claim of traveling for business, as the journey was an arranged one by a suspect, who they claimed to be their Agent “Muri” whose number was called severally without response.
‘Muri’ was alleged to be behind the processing of the tampered passports with a man’s picture on the chip when read by the MIDAS scanner.
The alleged offence is punishable by the Immigration Act 2015 on Passport related offences relating to aiding, identity theft and tampering with the passport.
The Comptroller General ,NIS Muhammad Babandede has directed that à thorough investigation be carried out to expose the syndicates behind this act and the two passports withdrawn as evidence and kept in custody until the agent “Muri” is located.
The two girls : Adebayo Kolapo Kazeem and Babalola Kehinde are witnesses for the prosecution of the agent, whenever he is found.
Babandede warned prospective applicants for the Nigerian passport not to allow criminal elements to take undue advantage of their desperation to perpetrate crimes such as these, that is punishable by imprisonment and or fine in an attempt to procure a passport for traveling out of the country.
The two girls,the statement said, are presently helping NIS with useful information that will help in the arrest of the agent “Muri” for prosecution of the case.