Beitar Jerusalem’s billionaire owner is hopitalised after claiming to have freed Gilad Shalit

Israeli football has been left stunned this Thursday after the Beitar Jerusalem owner Guma Aguiar was sectioned by a court order after the American-Israeli philanthropist was considered unstable having  claiming to have freed the Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit.

For those unaware, Gilad Shalit is a young Israeli soldier who was captured on 25 June 2006 by Palestinian militants in an audacious cross-border raid. Shalit, 19 years old at the time of his capture, has been in held captivity in Gaza since his abduction, and his release remains one of the most highly charged political issues current in Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Against such a background, fears over the health of Guma Aguiar – a billionaire energy industrialist who has invested over $4m into Beitar – were raised after the owner made the following statement in the Israeli press.

Aguiar: “He [Shalit] is at one of my properties. I wanted to prove that I could enter Gaza and come out alive and that Shalit could come out alive as well. He said that he wants me to tell his family how much he loves them and Israel, and that he hopes this ends soon.”

Only a few months ago Aguiar gave an in-depth video interview with the English daily newspaper Jerusalem Post in which the owner claimed to be on a mission from God in his work with Beitar.

The interview with Aguiar, which also traces his journey to being the owner over the Jerusalem club, can be seen here.


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