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Fake ‘Rev.’ held for swindling
Staff Reporter DIMAPUR, AUG 16 (NPN):
Published on 17 Aug. 2010 12:55 AM IST
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A 50-year old self-styled ‘Reverend’ was arrested by a team of Dimapur police from Senapati, Manipur for swindling off Rs 18, 04, 500 in cash. The money which was collected from 41 churches was spent in buying a house and paying of personal debts by the reverend.
Informing about the events, police sources said that the accused identified as ‘Rev’ Solomon Simte (Shanglong) Poumai created a fake ministry by the name of Mission of Lost Souls and recruited some skeletal staff. He then instructed them to introduce to churches claiming that the ministry was based in UK and was providing developmental funds for various project works, provided they pay 5 percent of the total sum required.
As per his instructions, one Naga lady was appointed as the state-in-charge, who naively collected a tidy sum of Rs 18, 04, 500 in cash from 41 churches from March 27, 2010-July 17, 2010. It may be mentioned that some churches had even paid a sum of Rs 5 lakhs. He also further informed the lady that the administration staff from Bangalore will come and verify the churches on July 20.
When the verification team failed to turn up, the state-in-charge contacted the reverend’s relatives and came to know that the ministry was fake. She then immediately lodged an FIR on July 29 and the fake reverend was finally arrested by a team of Dimapur police led by IO of the case SI Lucy Doungel of Women Cell from Senapati on August 13. A large number of genuine and fake seals, documents and various other incriminating things were also recovered from his possession. It may also be added that the reverend had even drafted a demise note of himself, which he was planning to advertise through the local papers.
Meanwhile, even just before his arrest the fake reverend had floated an advertisement in a local paper under the caption ‘Naga gospel voice’, without knowing that the police was already on his trial. While in custody, the fake reverend spilled the beans of his entire fake ministry and failed projects which he had taken up all these years. A person who did not even clear his matric exams, went on conning his theology degrees and finally obtained the title of ‘reverend’ from an unrecognized institution in Kerela.
He then unsuccessfully opened a school in Manipur, a hostel in Kohima and various self created ministries. He had even worked in some reputed NGOs with his fake degrees but the law finally caught up with him.
Married with four children, ironically, Simte’s mission lost more souls because they were greedy and gullible enough.

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