Samuel Kayode, a 57-year-old part-time pastor and accountant at a chain of academies championed by Michael Gove, has executed Britain’s biggest education fraud.
up in his personal accounts.
a fresh report yesterday says the 57-year-old part-time pastor was told
by the High Court to pay £4.1million back more than a year ago. He has
failed to do so, and it is feared most of the cash has been transferred
to Nigeria. The case, kept secret for almost two years, is believed to
be Britain’s biggest ever education fraud.
Kayode went to work at the college in 1997 and rose to become accounts
manager for the whole chain. He was paid £57,000 (N14.2million) a year,
and told colleagues of his work as a pastor in the Christ Apostolic
Church, South London, peppering his conversations with ‘praise the
Lord’. In October 2012 it emerged that a large sum of money was missing
from the academies’ funds. Kayode’s assets and those of his wife Grace,
who died aged 53 last year, were then frozen.
It appeared that huge sums of school money had been paid into a bank
account in Nigeria and a company called Samak, which is said to be run
in Nigeria by Kayode’s second wife Yoni, although he denies any wedding
has taken place.
The trust launched a High Court case to reclaim the missing cash but the
accountant denied wrongdoing and claimed ‘all transactions had been
authorised by the finance director’.
However, the judge found in the trust’s favour last July and ordered
Kayode and the estate of his late wife to pay back more than £4million
plus interest. He remains at large and is not facing any charges,
although he is due to speak to detectives again this week.