Destroyed by the shadowy pastor, the sick former deacon will have to cope with the assembly-line work to repay his debts. “I have no other way to live,” Fortunato whispers to Orsi. According to the Crown, Pastor Mwinda Lezoka deserves at least three years in prison for stealing more than $ 250,000 from her herd.
⁇ [Ses fidèles] Had absolute and blind faith in him. We have Mr. Lezoka’s word cannot be questioned, because it comes from a representative of God. It’s practically a bond of submission, ”the Crown Attorney requested on Wednesday.E During observations on the sentence of Jérôme Gagné, Mwinda Lezoka.
Man of God took advantage of the weakness of his faithful in the 2000’s when he led the Bethel, Evangelical Church, a Christian congregation in the Ahamsik district. Mwinda Lezoka used his “undeniable influence” to extort $ 268,000 from them, Judge Yves Paradis concluded last year by convicting him.
The pastor pushed his church into the financial pit by investing in ambitious real estate projects. He thus encouraged the two sisters to mortgage their home to lend $ 127,000 to the church, and also raised $ 50,000 from a believer on the pretext.
Church deacon Fortunato Orsini ended up on the streets after losing his house and $ 80,000. Mwinda Lezoka grabbed the “grip” on him, he said. At that time, he was lying on a chair in the church and struggling to eat. “I had to live instead of living,” he told the court.
A 68-year-old man struggling with heart problems is now forced to work four days a week in a factory in a physically difficult job. Crown argued that “the consequences are enormous” for Fortunato Orsini.
By calling for a three- to four-year prison sentence, the Crown insisted on Mwinda Lezoka’s “ascent” on her followers. “It simply came to our notice then. That is the church. For the good of the church, it is necessary to do so. ”E Won. “There is enormous pressure. Mr. Lejoka is fully God’s representative,” the prosecutor added.
According to the Crown, Mwinda Lezoka should also be ordered to pay back the victims. “We do not know where the money in question went,” he saidE Won. According to Defense, it is “ridiculous” to believe that the pastor can repay $ 268,000 in a few years.
According to the defense, a nine-month prison sentence is also sufficient. His lawyer, M.S.E Cynthia Lacombe explained that she was “trying to get herself back on track by going back to school” and would never be a pastor.
In addition, Mr. Lezoka’s fraud was not compared to a “big hidden and premeditated plan”, Mr.E Lacombe. In her view, Mwinda Lezoka is only “very optimistic” about her ability to repay debts to her followers. He has since gone bankrupt and has been placed on strict terms of release, she added. “He was able to leave the province,” Judge Paradis replied.
Until his indictment, Mwinda Lezoka continued to travel regularly to the Democratic Republic of Congo to lead an important local church. This year, however, Mwinda Lezoka was fired as the church’s general secretary due to allegations of misappropriation of funds. He completely excommunicated himself.
In a long list of indictments, the Church of Christ in Congo accused him of “creating an unhealthy atmosphere” in the church, bringing his fellow pastors to court, robbing them of property and never submitting financially. Report according to contact minutes Tap.
The judge will announce his decision next February.