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Five months banishment for fanditha man after magic used for soccer win in Male' competition
by Adam Haleem
translated from Haveeru
29 July 2001

Were Valencia (yellow) under a spell?
Photos: Meemu Zaviyani, Haveeru

A Male' court today sentenced a man who did fanditha magic to 'destroy' the opposition Valencia players and make his New Radiant club win in the final match of this year's Maldives Football Association cup.

Abdullah Haleelu, from Fasmeeru Garden house in Male''s Henveiru ward, was sentenced to five months banishment to the outer atolls for doing magic to influence the game.

The man, aged 40, admitted in court today to doing the magic on the 15th and 16th of June.

The police raided his house on the 19th and seized the equipment used for the fanditha ritual. The first MFA final match was played on that day and the result was a draw, 1 - 1.

The second match was played on the 21st, and New Radiant won the match, defeating Valencia 2 - 0.

Maldives football grand final Valencia defeated by New Radiant

In court, Haleelu said that though he was a supporter of New Radiant, he did the fanditha after a request during a visit by a high official from the club. He also claimed he did not charge for it.

He said eggs and coconuts were used in the rituals. The names of his team's players, and verses from the Koran were written on a coconut shell. A magic gridline drawing called an 'aka' was also added to the shell. Further writings and another 'aka' were drawn on a large piece of white cloth.

Except for his own fanditha books, all the other things he needed for the rituals were supplied by supporters of the club.

Maldives Football Association

Senior magistrate Mohamed Jameel sentenced Haleelu under Section 88 of the Penal Code for the offence of disobeying the rule of law by practising fanditha without a permit.

The court ordered that the police should not return the things seized from Haleelu.

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