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Trial date set for Thornton Heath vicar accused of conducting up to 492 sham marriages

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THIS is the first picture of the "fixer" accused of involvement in an alleged sham marriage ring involving hundreds of weddings in Thornton Heath.
Gilena Petkova, 50, is accused of helping to arrange a number of fake ceremonies as well as allegedly being married in one herself.
Today (Thursday) she appeared at Inner London Crown Court alongside Vicar Nathan Ntege and his verger Brian Miller.
The Reverend Ntege, 53, is charged with 14 immigration offences relating to 492 marriages held over a 15-month period at the Church of St Jude's and St Aidan's in Thornton Heath.
Miller, 79, of Owl Close, Selsdon, is also charged with the same offences.
The charges follow an investigation by the UK Border Agency's (UKBA) South London Criminal and Financial Investigation Unit.
Ntege and Miller, who were originally arrested in 2011, are each charged with one offence conspiracy to facilitate unlawful immigration and 13 charges of assisting illegal entry.
Petkova, who was arrested in Edmonton, Enfield, in December 2011, is charged with conspiracy and five counts of assisting illegal entry.
All three were due to enter pleas to the charges today but the proceedings were adjourned until a case management hearing at Inner London Crown Court on May 4.
A trial date has been set for November 4. It scheduled to last three to four weeks.
The UKBA are not yet certain how many of the marriages, conducted between December 2009 and March 2011, were valid.

Trial date set for Thornton Heath vicar accused of conducting up to 492 sham marriages


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