Head of Interior Ministry hopes pastor Adelaja won't leave Ukraine

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March 24, 2009, 2:30 p.m. | Ukraine | Politics — by Interfax-Ukraine


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The Ukrainian Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko has said that he hopes the head of Embassy of God church, Pastor Sunday Adelaja, will not break his pledge not leave the country. "He will not be able to leave Ukraine. The responsible authorities will not let this happen," the minister told the press in Kyiv on Tuesday.

The minister hoped the pastor would not even try to leave, as "he might bring down punishment on himself for that."

Lutsenko also denied Adelaja's claims that he is being persecuted by the police for religious reasons.

"It's not true, the case is on financial fraud," the minister said.

As reported, The Ukrainian Interior Ministry has accused the pastor of the Embassy of God, Sunday Adelaja, of defrauding citizens of money. Adelaja was accused as part of the investigation into a criminal case on the financial group King's Capital opened in January 2009. Part 4, Article 190 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, under which he has been charged, envisages five to 12 years of imprisonment, along with confiscation of property.

On November 24, 2008, Kyiv police officers arrested the leader of Kyiv-based financial group King's Capital, Oleksandr Bandurchenko, on suspicion of large-scale fraud. Vice Speaker Mykola Tomenko earlier asked Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko to investigate the activities of King's Capital due to reports about the group's doubtful activities, and in connection with this, the company's refusal to pay funds to its depositors.

Lutsenko reported the involvement of Adelaja in organizing the activities of the King's Capital financial group on November 25, 2008.

On March 14 the pastor signed a pledge not to leave the country.
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