A church minister told seven vulnerable women, including a thirteen year old girl, that he would ‘rid them of evil spirits’ before raping and sexually abusing them, Bradford Crown court has heard.
John Wilson, 70 has been accused of 31 offences against seven women. The charges include 23 indecent assaults, two rapes and one sexual assault. He allegedly told one of his victims: ‘Queens need to be dethroned, God has made me a king so I am allowed to do this’ before raping her.
The Mail Online reports:
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He told another that if she had evil spirits in her he would need to ‘go into the womb to release them’, it was said.
Wilson is accused of 31 offences against seven women, including 23 indecent assaults, two rapes and one sexual assault.
The church minister is also alleged to have plotted to commit four other indecent assaults with his wife and colleague. He denies all charges.
The alleged incidents were said to have taken place between 1984 and 2010, while Wilson served at Liberty Pentecostal Church in Keighley, West Yorkshire.
He is accused of carrying out the attacks during one-to-one prayer ‘deliverance’ sessions in the church and at the homes of his victims – the youngest aged just 13.
Opening the prosecution at Bradford Crown Court, David McGonigal QC said: ‘This case involves the sexual abuse of seven women in the name of religion.
‘John Wilson was purporting to rid the women of evil spirits by sexually touching them.
‘It is the prosecutions argument that he was doing it for his own sexual gratification.
‘It is our argument that he was sexually assaulting them.
‘They were taken under the wing of Mr Wilson and he would blame the abuse on evil spirits inside of them. These were vulnerable women.’
A police investigation was launched in July 2014 when a victim’s husband called the police.
Mr McGonegal added: ‘The first victim of the indecent assault had moved to the area that the church was located in after the death of her parents.
‘She confided in Wilson and said that she felt ready to trust someone.
‘Wilson invited her to individual prayers on a one-on-one basis.
‘He said to her he had to touch her wherever the evil spirit was and god would tell him where to touch.
‘He started to touch her breasts and unbuttoned her blouse.
‘You may notice that the blaming of evil spirits is a common feature in this case.’
Mr McGonegal told the court that Wilson remembered the victim and that she had a ‘lot of evil spirits’ and that he had undone her bra when he was questioned by police.
The court heard that another victim was told by Wilson that he would ‘have to go deeper and inwardly to where the demon was to get it out of her’ before he put his hand up her skirt.
He asked another victim if she had been ‘broken yet’ and would shout ‘come out in the name of Jesus’ while the abuse took place.
Mr McGonegal also said that Wilson told police he could hear ‘the noises of pigs’ inside another victim and needed to get them out.
He repeatedly told police that he got no sexual satisfaction from the ‘deliverances’.
Wilson said sometimes spirits would tear the clothes off his victims and that they would be naked because of the spirits, the court heard.
His wife Mary Wilson, 79, is charged with two counts of aiding and abetting indecent assault and one charge of conspiring to commit indecent assault.
The prosecution allege that she knew about the abuse and aided Wilson on three separate occasions.