How Catholic Priest Defiled & Impregnated Girl, 14

Posted on November 27, 2023
KINGSLEY EBERE
A Catholic priest, Rev. Fr. Nwaigwe Stephen, has landed in trouble in Anambra State for allegedly defiling a 14-year old girl in his care and getting her pregnant in the process.
P.M.EXPRESS reports that the incident happened at Ihiala in Anambra State, where Fr. Stephen resides with the victim under the false pretence of sponsoring her education.
He has been arrested and charged before the Awka Sexual and Gender-based  Court and remanded in custody over the alleged dastardly act.
Fr. Nwaigwe Stephen was alleged to be among some priests expelled by a Religious Congregation in Orlu, Imo State, known as the Two Hearts of Love Congregation” (Ugwu Nso) in 2018 for alleged misconduct.
The Presiding Magistrate, Genevieve Osakwe, ordered the prosecutor to  duplicate the case file and send it to the office of the Attorney-General and Commissioner for Justice of Anambra State for the DPP’s advice.
The alleged offence of having sexual intercourse with a minor is punishable under section 34(2) of the Child’s Rights Law of Anambra State, 2004, which attracts several years of imprisonment or life imprisonment.
The Police report stated that the defendant, forcefully took the pregnant minor to Benin City, Edo State, where she was delivered of the baby and investigation revealed that the whereabouts of the said baby is still unknown.
Rev. Fr Stephen’s journey to prison custody started when he met the teenager at St. Albert The Great Catholic Church Parish, Obosi, Anambra State, where he was invited for a religious church programme.
The victim told the Court that the priest took her from her parents to live with him when she was 14 years old, promising to sponsor her education while she equally served as his cook.
She stated that not long after she moved into the priest’s house, he started forcing himself sexually on her, saying he continued the act until she became pregnant at the age of 17.
“When I informed the priest about my pregnancy, he  took me from Ihiala in Anambra State, where we lived, to somewhere in Benin City, Edo, to the house of a man and woman whom the priest introduced to me as his brother and brother’s wife.”
“But when I gave birth to my baby at a native birth attendant’s house in Benin City, I was told that the baby died and when I made efforts for them to show me the dead baby, they said the baby had been buried”.
The Court asked her if she had been gang-raped before, the minor replied no and stated:
 “While on our way to Benin City, Fr. Stephen told me to say that I was gang-raped. But I have never been raped before, except the ones he (father) did to me in his house”.
The Police prosecutor told the Court to order the remand of the priest; witnesses were bound over to appear before the Court to give evidence, whenever the case would be mentioned.
However,  the defence counsel applied for bail of the defendant and also prayed the Court to grant bail to the priest in the most liberal terms; assuring the Court that Stephen would never jump bail, if granted.
But the Police prosecutor prayed the Court to refuse the clergyman bail, stating that the case before the Court was an offence against a minor, who was supposedly under the spiritual guardianship of the defendant.
The Presiding Chief Magistrate, Genevieve Osakwe, while ruling on the bail application, stated that the case before the Court was an offence punishable with life imprisonment, regretting that the offence of rape against minors was becoming rampant in the society.
Osakwe warned that the Court would not fold its hands to watch the society decay.
The Court ordered his remand and further adjourned the matter  till 6th December, 2023.

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