- The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has secured another high-profile conviction involving a prophetess, Linda Mabi-Praise
- Mabi-Praise, senior pastor of Temple of Praise Women Fellowship Global, was convicted by Special Offences Court, Lagos for an alleged N128 million fraud
- The prophetess will spend five years behind bars as she was sentenced to three years on count one and two years on count three, to run concurrently
Ikeja, Lagos - Linda Mabi-Praise, a self-acclaimed prophetess, was on Friday, December 17, convicted and sentenced to five years imprisonment for an alleged N128 million fraud.
The prophetess was convicted and sentenced by Justice S.O. Solebo of the Special Offences Court sitting in Ikeja following her arraignment by the Lagos state command of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC).
Mabi-Praise, according to the Foundation for Investigative Journalism, is a senior pastor of Temple of Praise Women Fellowship Global, Surulere, Lagos.
A statement on the EFCC's website indicates that the pastor who was charged with three counts, was alleged to have, with intent to defraud, dishonestly obtained the said sum from Accelsor Investment Partners Limited in the guise that her company, Mutano Energy Ltd., was an accredited oil and gas dealer and that she was into oil and gas dealership.
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She was also accused of issuing fake cheques to offset the funds.
Mabi-Praise pleaded not guilty
Meanwhile, Mabi-Praise pleaded "not guilty" to the charges when she was arraigned in March 2019 prompting commencement of trial.
EFCC's counsel, Franklin Ofoma, in the course of the trial, called two witnesses and tendered several documentary evidence to prove the case against the defendant.
Delivering his ruling on Friday, Justice Solebo found her guilty of counts one and three bordering on obtaining by false pretence and issuing of dishonoured cheques.
The trial judge held that the prosecution proved the allegations of obtaining by false pretence and issuance of dud cheques "beyond reasonable doubt".
Temper justice with mercy, Mabi-Praise's lawyer pleads
Defence counsel, Mumuni Qudus, however, pleaded with the Court to temper justice with mercy and to give the mother of two “a second chance".
After listening to Mabi-Praise's lawyer, Justice Solebo sentenced her to three years on count one and two years on count three, to run concurrently.
Amb Alam Kyriel commented on Facebook:
"Only that her title is also an offense. Who made her a prophet? Why did she not see as a prophet that EFCC will prosecute her for her deeds? Doomed Prophets."
Ariyo Peters said:
"Hope she's returning the money too sha.
"If not, many would rather go to jail but keep fund stolen."
Olalekan Idowu Oladapo said:
"Thief giving Christianity a bad name. Pray for genuine repentance."
Babatola Daramola said:
"I do not understand why pastors are turning to fraudsters these days.They are all after buying private jets shaaaaa ni."
Eteng O. Ubi said:
"A whole prophetess in that matter, this is bad. The love of money makes many men and women of God to go astray. The scriptures have spoken about all this things."
Christmas gift: EFCC returns stolen N326,000 to UNIBEN student
The sum was handed over to Gabriel by Adesola Amusan, an assistant commander of the EFCC.
This came after the student in September petitioned the EFCC over the illegal withdrawal of N326,000 from the N600,000 scholarship grant paid into his account.