Quiboloy subpoenaed for skipping Senate probe on human trafficking, sexual abuses

Sen. Hontiveros slams the pastor for skipping the Senate hearing, saying he is not God to be exempted from state authorities
Kingdom of Jesus Christ founder Pastor Apollo Quiboloy
Kingdom of Jesus Christ founder Pastor Apollo QuiboloyPastor Apollo Quiboloy/File

THE Senate committee on women, children, family relations and gender equality issued a subpoena against televangelist Apollo Quiboloy after he was a "no show" at the Senate inquiry on the alleged human trafficking and sexual abuse at his religious organization Kingdom of Jesus Christ (KoJC).

The hearing was led by Senator Risa Hontiveros on Tuesday, January 23, who declared the issuance of the subpoena against the pastor.

"Kayo Pastor [Quiboloy] ang dapat humarap sa susunod na pagdinig (Pastor Quiboloy, you should be the one to appear in the next hearing) because you are being subpoenaed by this committee," Hontiveros ordered the evangelist.

Quiboloy's legal team represented the pastor on his behalf.

According to Hontiveros, Quiboloy has sent a letter to Senate President Juan Miguel Zubiri.

The senator did not provide the details but said the letter was "admitted" for the record of the Senate committee.

Hontiveros slammed the KoJC leader for skipping the hearing.

"Hindi po kayo anak ng Diyos na exempt sa awtoridad ng estado," she said. "Kahit ang Korte Suprema ay walang kapangyarihang pigilan ang ganitong inquiries ng Senado, at ang pag-require sa mga taong humarap dito."

The senator also said that Quiboloy has been bragging about his "many powerful friends."

"But, like any ordinary witness, ‘you,’ of course, can invoke the right against self-incrimination only when and as the [possibly] incriminating question is propounded,” she added.

Hontiveros said Quiboloy's refusal to attend the hearing is an "insult to the Senate as an institution."

During the hearing, Hontiveros presented five former members of KoJC who experienced almost the same abuse from the organization’s leader.

Two of them were Ukrainian women – alias “Sophia” and “Nina” – who have been followers of Quiboloy’s organization since they were minors, starting 2024 and 2012, respectively.

In their respective testimonies, “Sophia” and “Nina” said they experienced sexual abuse from Quiboloy, who told them that they must sacrifice everything, including their body.

Related story:

Kingdom of Jesus Christ founder Pastor Apollo Quiboloy
5 Kingdom of Jesus Christ ex-members ‘abused’ by Quiboloy

In December 2023, Hontiveros filed Senate Resolution 884 seeking to investigate the accusations against KoJC, through Senate Resolution 884.

The resolution was filed amid the ongoing investigation by the House of Representatives into the alleged franchise violations of Sonshine Media Network International (SMNI), affiliated with Quiboloy's church.

The founder of KoJC faces charges of "conspiracy to engage in sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion, and sex trafficking of children; sex trafficking by force, fraud, and coercion; conspiracy; promotional money laundering."

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in the United States alleges that Quiboloy participated in a labor trafficking scheme that involved bringing church members to the US using fraudulently obtained visas. These members were allegedly coerced into soliciting donations for a fake charity, with the funds being used to support church activities and leaders' lavish lifestyles. (RGL/With reports from SNS)

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