The pastor and his herbalist accomplice will spend the next four years in prison for trafficking in human parts.
Such a verdict was pronounced on Monday by the Quara State Magistrates’ Court, meeting in Ilorin.
The founder of the church was named Pastor Gabriel Josaya, aka Eli-Wakuku, who was sentenced to four years in prison for trafficking in human parts.
Josaya, who is the prophet and founder of the Church of Saint Moses Orimolad Cherubim and Seraphim Ilorin, was convicted after a lengthy trial and sentenced to four years in prison without the possibility of being fined by Chief Justice Mohammed Ibrahim.
Josaya was convicted along with his accomplice Gabriel Moyozor, an herbalist who bought human skulls from him.
The men were found guilty of conspiracy, illegal possession of body parts and illegal possession.
The first police intelligence report showed that Josaya illegally entered the cemetery, where he exhumed human skulls and sold them to various clients for $ 8,000 per skull.
The FIR added that a human skull was found at Moyozor and confessed to the crime.
Police detective Peter Ibiyemi told the court in his testimony that Josaya confessed to exhuming more than 200 human skulls from a Muslim cemetery in the Auxerre de Ilorin area.
He added that Josaya started his business in 2009 and that he worked mostly at night and on his own.
According to Ibiemi, he paid the cemetery guard $ 10,000 for each operation.
He also claimed that Josaya confessed to selling each skull to Moyosor for NZ $ 6,000.
During cross-examination, pastor’s lawyer Ibrahim Olodzhoku argued that the statement received by his client was not made voluntarily, adding that the police forced him to confess a crime.
Olojoku, who claimed to have witnessed the torture of the accused by the police, added that he made the statement under duress.
The convict’s lawyer Toyin Onanolapo promised to properly consult on whether to appeal the sentence.
In 2016, Josaya and his accomplice were brought to trial by Kudirat Yahya for conspiracy, illegal possession of human heads and illegal possession of human heads, in violation of Articles 97, 348 and 219 of the Criminal Code.