A pastor, Egbunu Vincent Onuche, is presently cooling his feet in police custody for allegedly engaging in employment scam.
The 25-year-old cleric is the Senior Pastor of Spirit Embassy Church located in Gwagwalada area of Abuja.
FCT police authorities say that Onuche was working with one ‘Alhaji Sanusi Musa’, who is now at large, to defraud people seeking employment into the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).
The Commissioner of Police in charge of FCT, CP Bala Ciroma, said, “On the 7th May, 2019 at about 1600hrs one Egbunu Vincent Onuche ‘m’ age 25yrs was arrested by our operative, upon a report by one Ijeoma Ebenje that Vincent collected the sum of N200, 000 from her with a promise to get her a replacement employment with the Nigeria Immigration Service.
“Upon interrogation he admitted to the crime and explained he met one Alhaji Sanusi Musa sometimes back who told him that if he knew anybody looking for employment that he can assist.
“Vincent then informed his friend Ekene Ijeoma’s brother who then told her about the offer.
“She was asked to pay the sum of N200, 000 which she did and even got a confirmation email from the fraudsters created Immigration e-mail address.
“He said 16 other people paid him N200, 000 to N300,000 for employment into the Nigeria Prison Service and replacement into the Nigeria Immigration Service.
“He explained that crisis started when on the date of the said interview and collection of appointment letters, One Maimunat that is supposed to facilitate the process asked for additional N450,000 collectively from all of them.”
However, the pastor denied that he deliberately defrauded the victims, saying he is also a victim.
He said, “I am the senior pastor of Spirit Embassy located in Gwagwalada. I am also a victim.
“I was the one that brought people in. I brought 16 people and some of them paid 150,000 while others paid N200, 000. When I was introduced to him, I also paid N200, 000.
“The Police arrested me because the Alhaji is currently at large and the people want me to provide their money.
“Out of the whole deal, I got N100, 000. I met the Alhaji through a programme. He came with a lady called Maimunat and they asked me if I had people who were looking for jobs and I said yes.
“He then gave me his card reading OC to the President, one SP Halidu and he said we should address our acceptance letter to him.
“There was no interview but I didn’t suspect anything because he did not act in a suspicious manner.
“Some of the people I brought are family members, friends and members of the church.
“I did not know that the job was not real. We were all waiting for documentation and it was on the day of the documentation that he started asking for extra money and that was when it crossed our mind that the man might play a fast one on us.
“We started investigation and found out that the letters were not genuine.”
The police commissioner said that the victims provided proof of payment to Vincent for job placement in the NIS.
Ciroma added that investigations were ongoing to arrest Maimunat and Alhaji Sanusi Musa.