Nigerian televangelist arrested while evading arrest for sex trafficking in South Africa

Pastor Timothy Omotoso of the Jesus Dominion International ministry was arrested April 20 by a South African law enforcement organization similar to the FBI. For many of the televangelists we investigate, people are simply a utilitarian accessory—simply a means to an end. This televangelist appears to have carried things a step further, making merchandise of people’s bodies as well as their souls. The 58-year-old self-proclaimed prophet is also alleged to have molested and raped at least 30 young women who went to his church.

SABC News reported Omotoso tried to evade arrest by hiding inside the woman’s restrooms within the Port Elizabeth Airport. More on his arrest and video of his escort from the airport under heavy guard here.

According to Africa News, Omotoso’s church is reported to have more than 20 branches in South Africa and more branches in the United Kingdom and France.

He is the founder of a 24-hour satellite TV station, Ancient of Days Broadcasting Network (ADBN), which airs across the Caribbean, Africa, Mexico, Middle East, Europe and United States. His weekly TV broadcast, “Just As I Am,” is patterned after similar American televangelist shows —featuring music, sermons and miracle sessions. His website content seems to place him squarely within the modern Word Faith movement—a movement that emphasizes an extreme sense of entitlement.

Omotoso is a modern illustration of the Apostle Peter’s words in 2 Peter 2:1-3: “And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: …”