Climate Irungu Wiseman, founder of Bishop Climate Ministries in Camberwell District, South London, United Kingdom, has appeared in court after being accused of selling “plague protection kits” for £91 (N51,572), as a cure for COVID-19.
The clergyman appeared at Lavender Hill Magistrates’ Court on Monday.
Wiseman is charged with fraud and unfair trading offences after allegedly offering the package, which contained a small bottle of oil and a piece of red yarn as a “plague protection kit”.
The 46-year-old is said to have marketed the mixture of cedarwood and hyssop, with claims it could be used to “treat, prevent, protect against or cure” coronavirus.
The claims are said to have been made “in person, online, in instructional videos and through testimonial videos”.
Representing Southward Council, prosecutor, Ryan Thompson, said claims were made that the oil had “cured at least 10 people” in phone calls to the church during the investigation.
Thompson stated that there is a risk of “harm or death” to those who have bought the oil.
Speaking only to confirm his name, Wiseman pleaded “not guilty” to a single charge of fraud and two charges under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations between March 23 and 24.
Defending Wiseman, Maeve Thornton, said the case involved the freedom to practise religion.
The case was sent to the Inner London Crown Court, where the accused is expected to appear on September 13.