31 Mar 2011

Evangelical pastor Odulele sentenced for sex offences

Dr Albert Odulele, described as “a father figure” of his church, has been jailed for eight months after admitting charges of indecently assaulting a boy and sexually assaulting a man.

Dr Odulele, 47, who his parishioners called a “guiding light and a father figure” admitted fondling a teenage boy while he slept and touching a young preacher while sharing a hotel bed.

Today at Woolwich Crown Court, in London, he was jailed for eight months and six months respectively, to run concurrently, and put on the sex offenders’ register for five years.

Channel 4 News understands that there were originally eight alleged victims of Dr Odulele, but they did not want to give statements to the police.

The court heard how Odulele, founder of the Glory House International Pentecostal church, would frequently share hotel beds while travelling the world with a large entourage of security and pastors.

He was a respected speaker at international evangelical conferences, and made many appearances on religious television programs promoting his book where he described an encounter with an angel.

Evangelical pastor Dr Albert Odulele sentenced for sex offences

In around 2003, he was watching television with a boy over whom he had “assumed paternal influence”. When the boy fell asleep he put his hand in his underwear and fondled him.

The boy said he did not know what to do and was too scared to move. Odulele’s wife was pregnant with their daughter at the time. The boy was left “traumatised” and lost interest in academic work, before telling his mother about the abuse.

When confronted by the boy’s mother in spring last year, Odulele fell to his knees, crying and apologising, prosecutor Tom Nicholson told the court.

In 2004, he touched the inner thigh of a pastor while sharing a bed with him and another man at the Dartford Bridge Hilton.The man brushed off the advances of Odulele, the “guiding light and father figure” of the church, before being touched again, the court heard.

Odulele initially denied the crimes but later admitted to police he had been “battling” with his sexuality for years.

Glory House International is a registered charity with a turnover of £2 million a year.