Miracle babies evangelist preacher arrested

Telegraph, UK/December 14, 2006
By Thair Shaikh

A controversial evangelist who claims to help infertile couples have “miracle babies” through the power of prayer has been arrested.

Pastor Gilbert Deya, 54, faces extradition to Kenya to be tried on six allegations of child kidnap.

Scotland Yard said he was arrested in London following a request from the Kenyan authorities.

Deya, who has claimed he was consecrated as an archbishop in the US in 1992, is the head of the Gilbert Deya Ministries religious movement.

He has said he helps infertile couples in his congregation, estimated to be up to 34,000 strong in the UK, to have miracle babies “through the power of prayer and the Lord Jesus”.

He has been accused of trafficking children from the slums of Nairobi.

In 2004, a High Court judge ruled one so-called “miracle baby” was a victim of child traffickers motivated purely by financial greed.

A court heard that a one-year-old boy was taken into care after DNA tests did not match either of his supposed parents.

He was brought to Britain from Kenya in October 2003 by Mrs E, a woman claiming to be his mother.

Two years later, the judge said the boy should be given to a West Indian family for adoption.

In another case in 2004, coroner Dr William Dolman found a baby called Sarah, who died aged three weeks, was not related to either of her alleged parents.

The mother, from north London, was told she was infertile and travelled to Nairobi where she claimed to have given birth. But DNA tests proved otherwise.

It was the first time in eight centuries that an English coroner had to decide whether a miracle has taken place.

Twenty of Deya’s “miracle babies” have been taken into care in Kenya after DNA tests showed they had no genetic connection to their mothers.

He is in custody and will appear at City of London Magistrates’ Court this afternoon.

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