A SENIOR pastor with Prophet Adventure Mutepfa’s Revival Centre World Mission Church was on Sunday arrested during a church service on rape charges stemming from an incident in which he is accused of forcing himself on a married congregate.

David Waerera (32) of House Number 303, Area 3, Dangamvura is alleged to have raped the woman right inside the church which is situated in Mutare’s Dangamvura high-density suburb.

The complainant is married to a caretaker who used to work at the church located at Beta Shopping Centre.

Worshippers attending Sunday’s service were left with their mouths ajar, as uniformed police officers took the cleric off the pulpit and escorted him to the nearby Dangamvura Police Station.

He was detained at the police station for two nights and was brought to court on Tuesday morning.

Deputy Manicaland provincial police spokesperson, Assistant Inspector Luxson Chananda, said Waerera was accused of raping a married woman inside the church building sometime in November last year.

“Waerera was arrested by our officers from Dangamvura Police Station on Sunday during a church service. It is alleged that in September last year, the complainant’s husband was employed at the church as a caretaker. Subsequently, because of the nature of her husband’s job, the complainant and her family stayed at the church which is situated near Beta Shopping Centre.

“It is alleged that sometime in November, the suspect went to the church when the complainant was alone at home. He asked her to accompany him into the church and she agreed. While inside the church building, the suspect forced himself on the complainant and raped her once. After committing the crime, he threatened her with unspecified action if she ever divulged the rape to anyone,” said Asst Insp Chananda.

The matter only came to light on February 26 after the complainant’s husband began to suspect that something could have happened between his wife and the pastor.

“After she was questioned over the case by her husband, she spilled the beans and divulged everything. A police report was made leading to the pastor’s arrest,” he said.

At the Mutare Magistrates’ Courts on Tuesday morning, the prosecution department turned down the matter on the basis that there was no enough evidence to book the matter for initial remand.

Area public prosecutor, Ms Jane-Rose Matsikidze, referred the docket back to the police for further investigations.

“We have referred the docket back to the police station and the case will proceed by way of summons. What it means is that when the police finish their investigations they will bring it back and the suspect will be summoned to appear in court if evidence presented show that a crime was committed,” she said.