Pastor impersonates police officer, defrauds job seekers

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A pastor in Mzuzu in Mzuzu has been arrested for impersonating a police officer and defrauding a job seeker.

The pastor Charles Gonani, 35, was arrested on 20th July 2016 after it was reported he had been masquerading as a police detective based at Mzuzu Police Station and in the process defrauding an unsuspecting job seeker money.

Malawi Police

The Pastor claimed to be a police officer

Mzuzu Police Public relations officer Martin Bwanali has confirmed to Malawi24.

Bwanali said Gonani is a pastor of Thamanda Pentecostal Church which congregates at Masasa location in the city of Mzuzu but he has been telling church members that he is also a police detective based at Mzuzu police.

In May this year, the suspect proposed love to Loveness Manda. Later on they started staying together at Masasa location as a family. All along his wife knew him as a police officer at Mzuzu police station.

Each and every morning the unsuspecting woman had been lovely escorting the suspect to Mzuzu Police where the pastor said he was reporting for duties. The two usually partied ways at the main gate of the police station.

However, the pastor warned the wife not to contact his bosses in time of emergency at home saying their marriage was not legitimate and was against Police regulations. He said if Police authorities knew he was illegally married it meant he would be dismissed.

The same suspect in April this year, with intent to defraud, obtained from Akimu Phiri K25,000 cash by falsely representing that he would help him to be a police officer.

He was caught after some members of his church enquired from Mzuzu Police if indeed their pastor was a police officer.

Police arrested the pastor and he was found with a pack set used for wireless message and a khaki trouser resembling police uniform.

Some of the documents found in his possession showed that he had lied to Phiri that he was a police recruiter. It is suspected that Gonani might have defrauded many other people and Police are calling on such people to check with them.

The pastor now faces two criminal charges of impersonating a person employed in the public service and obtaining money by false pretence contrary to sections 99(b) and 319(1) of the Penal Code respectively.

Gonani comes Kadewere village in the area of Traditional Authority Lundu in Blantyre

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