Court Grants Customs Permission To Auction 3 Cars | The Guardian Nigeria News

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The Federal High Court, Abuja, on Friday granted the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) motion to condemn and auction three cars in its custody that have been unclaimed for over a year.

The service’s lawyer, Mr Umar Lawal, who addressed the court through an ex parte application, said the application was necessary as part of efforts to generate revenue for the government.

“We ask the court for the following alleviations;

“An order that the listed vehicles be condemned as forfeited to the claimant.

“An order authorizing the applicant to sell the said vehicles to the public and to remit the proceeds from the sale to the federal treasury.

“The vehicles were arrested in 2021 and have been there beyond the one month that owners are required to provide documentation of proper importation and duty payment.

“The vehicles have been in the sun all the time and are rusting due to the weather elements and depriving the government of revenue,” Lawal told the court

He said the vehicles were intercepted in Abuja and no claims were made by anyone.

The attorney said the NCS will release the court order, allowing the auction to show its honesty and transparency.

The vehicles include a Toyota Land Cruiser with VIN JTEB X9FJ3L5108348, a 2014 Toyota Hiace Bus with VIN JTGJXO2P9ECOS7 060 and a white 2021 Toyota Hilux with VIN MROBX8CD2M283 4123.

A supporting affidavit from Onakpya Obererri, a deputy customs inspector, said the vehicles are being held at Karu government camp within the jurisdiction of the court.

The accused said there was no litigation over the items that went unclaimed for over a month, as required by law.

“I have the authority and consent of Applicant herein to witness and swear all facts set forth herein in the Schedule marked “A”.

“By order and direction of the Comptroller-General of the NCS in relation to the issue of combating and/or eradicating the threat of smugglers in and around Abuja, whose activities pose a grave threat to the health and viability of the Nigerian economy, these seizures have been made .

“That the vehicles have not been collected for more than 30 days after the legal deadline for clearance at the Nigeria Customs Service Warehouse, Karu, Abuja.

The judge, Judge Zainab Abubakar, granted the request, saying the permission was based on the applicant’s testimonies, particularly where he said the order would be made public.

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