Pastor Arraigned For Allegedly Defrauding Church Members
The police in Lagos on Monday arraigned a 38-year old evangelist, Obiora Okoye, who allegedly obtained N1.6 million from his church members under false pretence.
Okoye, who resides at 3, Faith Estate, Toll-gate, Sango, Ogun, was arraigned at an Oshodi Senior Magistrate’s Court on a one-count charge of fraud.
Prosecutor Kehinde Olatunde said the accused in March, 2011 obtained N1.5 million from Chika Okoli with the pretext that he would procure a British visa for him and his wife.
Olatunde told the court the accused fraudulently obtained the money even when he knew that he did not own a travel agency or affiliated to any.
He said Okoye also promised to procure the complainant’s ticket and other travel documents.
Olatunde further said that the accused also obtained N103, 000 from Fidelia Ezonyeamu under pretence that he was going to help her brother, Michael Ezeifem adopt a child from a motherless baby’s home.
“Okoye organised prayer sessions and had been praying for Ezonyeamu’s brother, who had been married for two-years without a child.
“He promised to help them adopt a child from a motherless baby’s home, which he never did.”
The prosecutor said the accused absconded but was arrested by the police on 19 July, adding that the offence contravened Section 312 of the Criminal Laws of Lagos State 2011. Okoye pleaded not guilty to the charge against him. The presiding Senior Magistrate, Mr. M. R. Osho-Adebiyi, granted him bail in the sum of N500, 000 with two sureties in like sum.
He adjourned the case till 2 August for mention.