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The Ondo State Police Command has clarified that 77 persons have been rescued from a church in Ondo town followibg fears of abduction

Earlier reports indicated the children were kidnapped for possible trafficking

But the police preliminary investigation has shown that it was a case of the pastors of the church holding their members captive through false teachings.

The Police had responded to complaints by residents of the community, and rescued some children who were confined to an underground apartment of a church on Friday evening.

The church, Whole Bible Believers Church, is located at the Valentino area of the town.

Police Spokespersons Funmilayo Odunlami, had earlier on Saturday morning said the police had arrested the pastors and other members involved and that investigations were ongoing.

She however gave further details on Saturday evening on how the police rescued the children and other members of the church held in the captivity.

She said the police responded to reports gathered by the Police at Fagun Division, Ondo Town, that some children were being harboured at The Whole Bible Believers Church AKA Ondo Church.

“Policemen were sent to the Church to invite the Pastor and the members of the Church on sighting the Police attacked them,” Mrs Odunlami said in the statement.

“Preliminary investigation revealed that one Pastor Josiah Peter Asumosa, an Assistant Pastor in the Church was the one who told the members that Rapture will take place in April but later said it has been changed to September, 2022 and told  the young members to obey only their parents in the Lord.

“Another family who was also around during the rescue said their daughter a part 3 student, dropped out of school due to the strange teachings of the Pastor and left home in January, 2022 to start living in the Church.”

The Police said they rescued 77 persons from the church including 26 children, eight teenagers and 43 adults.

“The two (2) Pastors are in Police custody.
Investigation has commenced and the outcome will be made known to the members of the Public.,” Mrs Odunlami added.

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