A Cherubim and Seraphim Nigerian pastor based in the United Kingdom, Michael Oluronbi has been jailed for 34 years after his conviction for multiple rapes of young female members of his church.
The religious leader was arrested when one of the victims he abused came forward. He was detained by police last year at Birmingham airport on his way to Nigeria.
When eventually confronted about his offences, Oluronbi said ‘the devil made me do it’.
During his trial on Friday, the court was told there were at least 88 separate occasions on which the cleric raped his victims, who are now adults.
Some offences were carried out after he convinced some of his victims to take part in “spiritual bathing”, which he said would “cleanse” them of evil spirits.
Birmingham Crown Court in central England was told some of his young female victims became pregnant several times.
But Oluronbi, a trained pharmacist, took them to abortion clinics to hide his crimes.
The minister’s wife, Juliana, 58, was jailed for 11 years after being found guilty of three charges of aiding and abetting rape after helping arrange some of the terminations.
Both defendants will be required to sign the sex offenders’ register for life.
Sentencing Oluronbi on Friday, Judge Buckingham said: “You claimed that God was instructing you to conduct holy baths. Its real purpose was to fulfil your insatiable sexual appetite. The children feared you and this enable you to continue your grip.
“Your offending has had an extreme and severe impact on all of your complainants. Any attempt to suggest otherwise would be without foundation.
“You abused your position of trust – they trusted you like God. You did this because you are an arrogant, selfish and vain man.
“In my judgment, your offending must be one of the worst cases of sexual abuse of multiple children to come before the courts.”