An aristocratic woman who disappeared with her s*x offender partner and newborn baby had been “brainwashed” by a controversial Nigerian preacher, according to a childhood friend.
Constance Marten — who is from a wealthy family with ties to the royals — went missing alongside convicted rapist Mark Gordon and their baby on January 5 after the couple’s car broke down and caught fire on the hard shoulder of the M56.
Police have launched a desperate search operation to locate them and are concerned about the welfare of the mother and baby — who they believe have not been seen by medics.
A family friend of Ms Marten has said that the 35-year-old spent six months living in Nigeria while working for pastor T B Joshua — the leader and founder of charismatic Christian megachurch Synagogue Church of all Nations (SCOAN).
She claims that Ms Marten returned from the trip “traumatised” after becoming one of his “disciples“.
The friend also believes that Gordon — who spent 20 years in a US prison for raping a woman after burgling her when he was just 14 — could now have a “hold over” Ms Marten.
Pastor T B Joshua, who died aged 57 in June 2021, was known widely across Africa and Latin America and was renowned for his claims that he could heal the sick through the “supernatural power of God”.
Ms Marten — whose friends call her Toots — is reported to have joined Joshua after she attended an evangelical-style course exploring Christian beliefs in London.
Her friend, who wishes to remain unnamed, told the Daily Mail: “She ended up becoming one of his disciples in Nigeria. I believe she got brainwashed while she was over there. The experience traumatised her.
“She was not the same person when she came back. She always used to be wild, but also happy, kind and buoyant. She was darker when she came back and she found things more difficult
“She never told us what really happened. T B Joshua was a God-like figure. It was scary, and I believe it changed her. It was a huge part of her life.”
The friend said that after returning from Nigeria, Ms Marten had “strained relations with her family”.
She added: “She was still exuberant in everything, but she found relationships very hard. It was like she came back totally f***ed. She was more rebellious. She thought she had recovered, but it was difficult for her.”
Godwin Okine is a journalism major with 10 years of experience in blogging, content creation, SEO etc.
Godwin loves reading and researching and puts those skills to use as the Founding Editor of Nigeriabombshell.com
Contact [email protected]