18 May 2022

Kildare pastor accused of stealing large sum of money from his own parish

Kildare pastor accused of stealing large sum of money from his own parish

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Naas District Court was told that a pastor allegedly stole between €180,000 to €200,000 from his church on several dates between 2012 and 2020.

Ebenezer Oduntan, with an address listed at 45 The Close, Curragh Grange in Newbridge, is accused of regularly cashing cheques for himself which were originally meant for The Redeemed Christian Church of God: City of David Parish, located at Tougher Business Park between Naas and Newbridge.

Gardaí allege that the 55-year-old used some of the money to pay for his own private health insurance.

A book of evidence was presented before the court for 27 alleged theft offences on Thursday, November 18.

It was also heard in the court that the majority of the parish's members donate 10 per cent of their income towards it.

Solicitor David Gibbons told the court that the defendant still works as a pastor in his parish.

Judge Desmond Zaidan sent the defendant forward for a trial by jury at Naas Circuit Court on January 11, 2022.

He agreed to keep Mr Oduntan on station bail and also gave him an alibi warning.

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