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EDITIONS
Thursday, 13 June, 2002, 16:37 GMT 17:37 UK
'Buy my soul for 10'
Gareth Malham
The asking price for Mr Malham's soul is 10
A university graduate is selling his soul to the highest bidder on an internet auction site.

Gareth Malham, 26, from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, has promised the buyer an ownership contract written in his own blood.

Bidding closes on the eBay website on Friday and so far only one person has lodged a bid to buy Mr Malham's soul for 10.

Members of the clergy have dismissed Mr Malham's actions as "dangerous".


I don't believe I'm going to be sent into eternal damnation, I'm only metaphorically selling it

Gareth Malham

Mr Malham - who says he is an atheist - told BBC Radio Newcastle that selling his soul was only the start.

He plans to "metaphorically" sell himself in the name of art and says he eventually aims to float himself on the stock market.

Mr Malham, a former student at Sunderland University, said: "It's the start of a greater art project.

"The plan is to metaphorically sell myself totally on eBay.

"I'm going to have sales where I'm selling answers to questions about myself and I will reply to the buyer on video tape.

"I'm also planning to sell parts of my body, where the buyer would get a photograph of the body part, and also sell ideas to people.

Student loans

"Eventually I want to float myself on the stock exchange, turn myself into a company called Gaz Plc."

Mr Malham said he had built up 10,000 in debts while at university, but did not expect his soul to help him pay it off.

"I'm not selling my soul for the money because I don't expect to get much," he said.

"I'm not exactly going to pay off any student loans with 10."

Mr Malham said the only person to put a bid in for his soul so far was an American and not the Devil.

"It's someone from the States going under the name of Cezza," he said.

Weird happenings

"I would not be concerned about selling my soul to the Devil at all because I'm just playing with the idea that someone thinks I'm selling my soul.

"I'm an atheist, I don't believe I'm going to be sent into eternal damnation, I'm only metaphorically selling it on eBay.

"I suppose if things did start to happen that were a bit weird, I'd keep a diary... it would be really interesting.

"No-one I have spoken to is taking it seriously... they just think it's really funny."

Father Brian Russell, of St Leonard's RC Church, in Sunderland told BBC News Online it was "ridiculous".

"One doesn't get possession of one's soul to be able to sell it," he said.

Legally binding

"It could be physically and psychologically a very dangerous thing to do.

"The Devil can work through other people, and even though he is not selling it to the Devil, it could be bought by a satanist and someone bent on evil."

Mr Malham's advert promises a "real bargain", and he said the contract must now be written with his blood.

"I've said on email it will be in my blood, so it will have to be... it's legally binding on eBay.

"But first of all I have to find a doctor who is willing to extract the blood for me... which could be difficult."


Click here to go to Tyne
See also:

29 Jan 02 | England
20 Aug 01 | Scotland
02 Feb 01 | Business
23 May 00 | Europe
30 Apr 99 | Americas
16 Feb 99 | Business
03 Sep 98 | Entertainment
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