A 19-year old, Udoh Abraham, recently caught inside a church, opened up and confessed that he actually went to churches with the aim of stealing worshippers' phones and bags during church services.
The suspect made the confession before the Isolo Magistrates court, Lagos where he was arraigned for entering a church and was caught stealing Pastor's phone during a vigil.
He admitted that he had been going to churches to steal but phones especially.
He pleaded guilty before the court, pleaded for leniency and promised that he will not engage in such act again if pardoned.
The theft took place at Inspiration of Jesus Church located at Freedom Street, Itire, Lagos during a vigil. It was gathered that Abraham had joined other worshippers during the service and pretended to be one of them not knowing he had another motive.
At about 2.00 am when the presiding Minister had closed for the service and they were waiting for the day to break before the worshippers will leave the church to their homes.
It was while they were still there and some of them had slept that Abraham secretly went and stole Pastors Oluwashide Bunmi and Segun
Olaniyan phones and hid inside his pocket.
While he was attempting to escape, unknown to him some of the worshippers saw him and raised alarm before he was caught redhanded in the church premises. He was handed over to the police at Itire Division and the phones were recovered as exhibits by the police.
The police that Abraham admitted and wrote in his statement that he went there to steal phones and not to pray as he had pretended.
He was charged before the court for the offence and he admitted. The prosecutor, Mr Oje Uagbale presented the facts before the court and asked the court to sentence him accordingly to serve as deterrent to those who might want to go to places of worship to steal.
Abraham pleaded passionately and told the court that he had realised his mistake and will never try such in the future.
The Presiding Magistrate, Mrs. O.A. Teluwo found him guilty as charged and sentenced him to community service with stern warning that if he stole and was brought to court again, he will stay longer in prison.