South Africa’s “Doom Pastor” – who sprayed congregants in the face with insecticide – is to pay a fine in order to avoid jail.
Lethebo Rabalago was offered the option of a four-year jail term or paying a 21,000 rand ($1,800; £1,300) after being found guilty of assault and contravening the Agricultural Stock Remedies Act.
The 25-year-old has agreed to pay the fine off in 3,000 rand monthly installments, the Sowetan newspaper reports.
Rabalago – who runs the Mount Zion General Assembly – was arrested after it emerged he had used the product to “cure” his followers of various ailments, including cancer and HIV, in 2016.
In photos circulating on social media – which were picked up around the world – he was seen spraying the insecticide directly into the eyes and various body parts of his congregants.
Five worshippers came forward to tell police he had sprayed it directly in their faces.
One was left coughing for months afterwards.
When he was convicted earlier this month the magistrate said that being “sprayed in their faces with Doom makes this offence [the] worst of its kind”.