Michael Oluronbi, a 60-year-old Cherubim and Seraphim pastor based in Birmingham, in the United Kingdom, was on Tuesday January 14th, convicted by a UK court for 24 counts of child sexual abuse and rape.
Specifically, he was found guilty of 15 counts of rape, seven counts of indecent assault, and two counts of sexual assault. His wife, Juliana Oluronbi, age 58, was also convicted of three counts of aiding and abetting rape.
According to court papers, five of the seven victims are siblings who were abused at their home address where the church conducted services. The prosecutors told the court that Oluronbi hid under the guise of carrying out deliverance and spiritual works on his victims, male and females, to sexually assault them. The main tactic he employed was to claim that God had instructed him to administer ‘Holy Baths’ to some of his congregation in order to ‘cleanse’ them and protect them from evil influences.
The prosecutors told the court that police investigations showed that his wife, Juliana Oluronbi, gave her unwavering support to her husband and particularly arranged abortions whenever any of the victims got pregnant by her husband.
“This case involved the serious and sustained sexual abuse of vulnerable young children by a religious leader. The young age of the victims greatly increases the seriousness of the offences.
“As a result of the hard work and diligence of the prosecution team, and the strength of the evidence, the two defendants were found guilty after trial.
“It is only due to the great courage of the victims that this abuse was brought to light, and the full extent of the despicable and lawless behaviour of these people revealed.” Georgina Hewins, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said:
Oluronbi was arrested at Birmingham Airport in May last year, while trying to leave the country for Nigeria with some of his belongings and a sum of cash. Police are unable to determine whether he was trying to flee justice, but pointed out he had recently been confronted about the abuse by one of his victims.
In a confession videoed last year by a victim’s family member who had confronted him, Oluronbi was heard saying:
“Everything was just my fault, and as I said before, I wasn’t meant to be human. I wasn’t meant to live under the roof of any human being and I said that I was an animal.” he said
The Oluronbi’s are due to be sentenced on a later date.