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Three clerics risk jail terms for ‘operating’ corpse in Lagos

By News Desk

Three clerics identified as Jacob Farinmade, Abraham Olujobi and Olatunde Taiwo may be facing lengthy years in jail should the Ikeja Domestic Violence and Sexual Offences Court find them guilty of raping and abuse of corpses of their congregants.

The suspects who were re-arraigned before the court by the Lagos State Government on an eight-count charge of rape and abuse of corpses of their congregants. Farinmade, Olujobi and Taiwo plead not guilty to three charges of conspiracy and misconduct with regards to a corpse.

While the three suspects pleaded not guilty to misconduct, Farinmade specifically pleaded not guilty to five counts bordering rape, unlawful detention and unlawful burial in a house.

The state Prosecutor, Olusola Soneye, said that the defendants who were in charge of the Celestial Church of Christ Gospel Mission at No. 15/23 Pipeline Street, Ipaja, Lagos committed the offences in 2015.

“The defendants sometime in 2015, indecently cut open the corpse of Deborah Elijah for the purpose of separating her from her foetus prior to burial.

“They treated the corpse of one Olubunmi Saliu in an undignified manner by burying her in a shallow grave in the church premises,” he said.

Soneye said that Farinmade while being the reverend in charge of the church, raped three women (names withheld) and unlawfully detained one of the women.

“Farinmade also authorised the burial of Deborah Elijah in an adjourning land at the Celestial Church Gospel Mission without the relevant consent of the Local Government Authority,” he said.

The offences contravene Sections 144, 165, 260 and 411 of the Criminal Law of Lagos 2015. The prosecutor said that 13 witnesses are set to testify against the clerics on behalf of the prosecution.

However, the presiding judge, Justice Abiola Soladoye ordered that the clerics continue to be remanded at the Kirikiri Maximum Correctional Center and adjourned the case until December 16 for trial.

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