A Magistrate’s Court sitting in Akure, Ondo State, on Monday remanded in prison custody, Alfa Babatunde, the pastor of Sotitobire Praising Chapel, Akure, over the disappearance of a boy in his church.
The one-year-old boy, Gold Kolawole, was allegedly abducted in the church during a Sunday service in November.
The development generated violent reactions from the residents of the town, as the church was set ablaze by some irate youths in protest against the alleged abduction.
The youths also alleged “lackadaisical attitude” on the part of the Police in their investigation of the matter.
During the violence, no fewer than three people died, including a policeman whose identity has not been revealed.
Many houses, vehicles and other property that belonged to the church were also set ablaze by the irate youths.
According to the prosecution, apart from Alfa Babatunde, other defendants are Omodara Olayinka, Margret Oyebola, Grace Ogunjobi, Egunjobi Motunrayo, Esther Kayode and Peter Anjorin.
Babatunde and six members of the church were arraigned before the court by the Directorate of State Services on two counts of felony, to wit, kidnapping and aiding kidnapping; while the seventh defendant, Peter Anjorin, was charged with destroying evidence that could aid the investigation.
After the arguments from the prosecuting counsel Mr. Joshua Dada, and the defence counsel, Mr. Olusola Oke, on the bail application of the defendants, the Magistrate, Mrs. Charity Adeyanju, ordered the defendants to be remanded in Olokuta Correctional Centre, Akure.
She, also adjourned the case until January 17, 2020 to enable the Department of State Services conclude their investigation into the matter.
The court also ruled that the defendants should be allowed to have access to medical treatment.