A 40 -year-old Pastor, John Apeh, on Tuesday in Lagos appeared in an Ikeja Magistrates’ Court for allegedly defrauding a woman of N1 million.
Apeh, who resides at Ipaja, Lagos, pleaded not guilty to two counts of stealing and obtaining money under false pretenses.
The Prosecution Counsel, ASP Ezekiel Ayorinde, told the court that the defendant committed the offence on March 28, at Anifowose, Ikeja, Lagos.
He said that the defendant unlawfully obtained N1million from Mrs Funke Tola with the pretext of using the money to help her offset her debt.
Ayorinde said that the complainant had some “money issues” with her business partner and was arrested.
He said that the complainant wrote an undertaken to pay part of the money to her business partner.
“The complainant was sick the day she was to pay the first payment.
“She transferred the money on agreement to the defendant, who is her friend and pastor, to help her deliver it to her business partner at the station.
“After the defendant received the bank alert, he disappeared and all efforts made to retrieve the money failed,” he said.
The prosecutor said that the defendant was later arrested and handed to the police.
The offence, he said, contravened the provisions of sections 287 and 314 of the Criminal Law of Lagos State, 2015.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Section 287 carries three years imprisonment for stealing while section 314 attracts 15 years for obtaining money under false pretenses.
Magistrate B.O Osunsanmi admitted the defendant to bail in the sum N300, 000 with two sureties in like sum.
Osinsanmi ordered that the sureties must be gainfully employed and must show evidence of two years tax payment to the Lagos State Government.
She adjourned the case until July 3, for mention.
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