Stairway to heaven is only RM5,000 to this ‘sheikh’

  • Nation
  • Tuesday, 03 Mar 2015

WHAT does a ticket to heaven cost? At least RM5,000, according to a conman who claimed that his prayers would guarantee admission into heaven.

Harian Metro reported that the man, who introduced himself as a sheikh from Iraq, purportedly had friends in high places in Malaysia.

He had been seen at official events attended by VIPs and posing for photographs with them.

Apparently, he would use such functions as his platform to reach out to potential victims.

He claimed that his prayers were effective because of his status as a religious scholar.

He also claimed that he could help speed up approvals for citizenship and visas because of his “connection” to the VIPs.

One of his victims, known only as Fakrul, said he met the conman through a mutual friend.

Fakrul, 34, said he sought his services when a friend from Algeria was having visa problem.

During a meeting with the man, Fakrul was told that he could see a high-ranking official who could help him for a RM2,000 fee.

The man also suggested that Fakrul’s wife and his Algerian friend’s wife join his “business”.

An argument erupted between them and the sheikh threatened Fakrul’s friend that he would report him as a member of Islamic State.

Fakrul and his friend later lodged a report at the Kajang police station.

> The daily also reported that actress Hanis Zalikha has decided to wear the hijab to fulfil her parents’ wishes.

Hanis, 25, said she had been thinking about it for a few months.

She also wanted to have the blessings of her parents before she married actor Hairul Azreen Idris.

“My parents have always voiced their wish to see me in a headscarf. I feel that it is the right time now since all my commitments in the entertainment industry are over,” she said.

Hairul Azreen uploaded a photo of Hanis in a brown hijab on his Instagram page several days ago.

Their fans have responded positively to the move.

> Found in translation is compiled from the vernacular newspapers (Bahasa Malaysia, Chinese and Tamil dailies). As such, stories are grouped according to the respective language/medium. Where a paragraph begins with a >, it denotes a separate news item. 

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