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17.08.2004 Tabloid News

Pastor Dives Into River - To Escape Arrest

By Mirror

Luck eluded the pastor of New Life Fountain Ministry at Obuasi in the Ashanti Region when he dived into the Offin River in a bid to escape arrest.He had to be rescued by the very person he was running away from, together with some residents since he could not swim and therefore found himself drowning.

The pastor, Theophilus Watch, was suspected by one Mr Richard Amoasi, a licensed chemical seller at Dunkwa-on-Offin in the Central Region, to have stolen his electrical gadgets and was therefore going to confront him at his hideout.The pastor who had gone into hiding in a bush near the Offin River after committing the crime, on seeing Amoasi approaching, dived into the river.

Some residents who witnessed the incident and spoke to The Mirror, alleged that the pastor took advantage of Mr Amoasi's absence to rob him of his video deck, VCD and sound system after he had gone to his house to pray for him.They said Pastor Watch had been having prayer sessions with Mr Amoasi at his residence at Dunkwa-on-Offin for some time and for his last prayer visit, he arranged to visit again on a Tuesday.

According to them, Mr Amoasi however told him he would be out on that day so the pastor should make it another time. Little did he know that the pastor, who had become a regular visitor to the house, knew where the victim hid his keys anytime he went out and therefore went to the house and robbed him.

A son of Mr Amoasi later realised the electrical gadgets were missing and therefore reported to his father when he returned home. While Mr Amoasi was at home on Thursday, three days after the incident, and still pondering who could have perpetrated such a criminal act, the pastor sent a young man to the house to pick his prayer accoutrements that he had left in the victim's house.

The victim who had been suspecting the pastor all along, asked the messenger to lead him to the pastor but he refused and only heeded after threats that he would be sent to the police station if he did not reveal where the pastor was.On seeing Mr Amoasi and the messenger, Pastor Watch took a dive into the Offin River but started drowning because he could not swim.

His victim, sensing danger, called for help from neighbours and the pastor was rescued and sent to the Dunkwa-on-Offin District Police Station. The officer in charge at the police station, Sergeant Adu Gyamfi, who confirmed the story in a telephone interview, said the pastor after interrogation, had admitted committing the offence.

The officer said they were conducting further investigations to help retrieve the items and that in a search on him ยข195,000 was retrieved.

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