A CHRISTIAN pastor arrested over 'spanking' allegations has been charged with child cruelty and sexual assault.
Reverend Howard Curtis, formerly of the Coulsdon Christian Fellowship, was arrested in July 2013 over allegations he 'spanked' people as part of a religious ritual.
Mr Curtis, 71, answered bail today (Monday) and was charged with six counts of child cruelty, two indecent assaults, four sexual assaults and one count of assault by penetration.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman said the charges relate to offences against eight alleged victims between 1969 and 2012.
Mr Curtis, of Bloxworth Close, Wallington, was bailed to appear at Croydon Magistrates' Court on October 31.
He was the leader of the Coulsdon Christian Fellowship until May 2012 when he was replaced by Reverend Dominic Warner. He remained a senior minister until June 2013.