Audio Leaks; Govt takes over prosecution of popular Pastor for allegedly defiling minor

Audio Leaks; Govt takes over prosecution of popular Pastor for allegedly defiling minor

The Rivers State Government has taken over the prosecution of Pastor Felix Okpara Duruebube.

The office of the Attorney General and Commissioner of Justice will henceforth handle the police charges against him.

The news broke within 24 hours of a conversation between Duruebube and a minor was leaked on social media.

The teen informed him that a member of his family had discovered what was going on. In response, the cleric stated that he overheard someone else discussing it.

The founder of Mercy House Church International, Duruebube, is accused of defiling a 16-year-old girl.

In late June, a Port Harcourt Chief Magistrate’s Court remanded him to the Port Harcourt Correctional Centre.

Duruebube’s case was adjourned until August 18 by Chief Magistrate N. Anugbum after he failed to meet bail conditions.

The Police State Criminal Investigation and Intelligence Department (SCIID) arraigned the Pastor on a two-count charge

According to the charges, the defendant allegedly defiled the teen between April 2021 and May 2022.

He is accused of sexually abusing children at the RayJPE Hotel Rumuokoro, Mercy House Church branch Iwofe, and No.42A road 12 Rumuahulu in Port Harcourt.

Duruebube is said to have forced the minor to swear not to sleep with another man or tell anyone about the illegal love affair, or she would go insane and die.

The offense is punishable under Section 32(1)(2) of the Child Rights Act CAP 50 Law of Rivers State, 2003.

On count two, the accused committed an offense punishable under Section 208 of the Criminal Code, CAP 37, Vol.11 Laws of Nigeria, 2004.

Duruebube pleaded not guilty and was granted bail in the sum of N2 million with two sureties.

One of the sureties must be a bishop, and the second must be a relative with land in the magisterial district.

The International Federation of Women Lawyers (FIDA) in Rivers advised Nigerians to exercise caution when visiting religious institutions.

Mrs Adata Bio- Briggs, the chairperson, vowed that the group would monitor the situation to ensure that justice was served.

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