Police raid six houses and arrest man amid investigation into SPAC Nation Church
On Thursday the police raided six houses and arrested a man as part of a criminal investigation into individuals associated with London church SPAC Nation.
The 24-year-old was being questioned at a south London police station on suspicion of fraud offences.
Detective Chief Superintendent Mick Gallagher said: "This activity forms part of an investigation into allegations made against individuals who are currently, or have previously been, linked to SPAC Nation.
"While we do not provide a running commentary on ongoing investigations, I know there will be concern about the impact this activity may have on those who regularly engage with the services of the church. We are the police, and our primary concern is protecting the safety of the public, which we will do through all means available to us."
The police was made aware of reasons to investigate allegations of fraud and other offences, relating to individuals associated with SPAC Nation in 2019. Following an exclusive investigation by HuffPost UK in November.
Officers carried out a review to identify if any criminal offences had been committed, but made it clear they would not be launching an investigation.
However, in February 2020, the Metropolitan Police Service received new allegations of a similar nature. These were reviewed, and a criminal investigation was launched.
Since the investigation, SPAC Nation has always denied any wrongdoing. In response to the February allegations, the church said it had thousands of members and could not respond on behalf of individuals.
SPAC Nation has been praised by politicians as a pioneering church and a beacon of hope for ex-gang members, but this has been hit by serious allegations.
HuffPost UK investigation into SPAC Nation, revealed that the church had created opportunties for fraudsters to operate and was failing to act on allegations of some pastors financially exploiting the young people it claims to help.
Source: HuffPost UK