Adventist Pastor Arrested Over N15million Fraud, Secretly Enrolling Wife On Church Payroll

July 14, 2021
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Pastor Omosebi Fred Adeola of the Adventist Church was arraigned before Justice A.O Otaluka of the Federal High Court in Apo, Abuja, by the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission on Tuesday.

The cleric is accused of conspiracy, abuse of power, and diversion of N15,619,000 in an 11-count allegation.

Adeola is the Country Director of the Adventist Development and Relief Agency of Nigeria, as well as a pastor in the Adventist Church.

According to the EFCC, the man of God allegedly diverted relief funds to pay for his Doctor of Philosophy study at Babcock University and fraudulently put his wife on the church’s payroll.

According to count two of the complaint, Adeola committed criminal breach of trust by being a signatory to multiple bank accounts on December 13, 2017 in Abuja.

He allegedly transferred N7,714,000 from the Adventist Development and Relief Agency of Nigeria to Ayeni Gbenga Joseph’s account first.

Following Adeola’s instructions, the money was cashed and put to personal use.

Section 311 of the Penal Code Law, Cap. 532, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria (Abuja), 1990, prohibits the offence and others, which are punishable under Section 312 of the same law.

All of the accusations against the pastor were dismissed when he entered a “not guilty” plea.

Ibrahim Audu, the prosecutor’s lawyer, asked the court for a trial date and for the defendant to be remanded in custody pending trial.

E. G. Alala, the defendant’s lawyer, informed the court of a forthcoming bail application, pleading with the court to give his client bail since he is “a humble man of God who honored EFCC invites.”

Adeola was granted bail in the amount of N10 million and two sureties in the same amount by Justice Otaluka.

The sureties must be Abuja residents, own a property worth N10 million, and furnish addresses.

They must furnish identification cards, passport photos, and a bond of N3 million. The lawsuit has been postponed until September 30, 2021.

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