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368,379 people killed, 306,096 injured and over $2,815,931,000 in economic damages

What's the harm in believing in witchcraft?

Witchcraft refers to the belief in witches or other beings that have special powers.  Read more about witchcraft

Here are 14,738 people who were harmed by someone not thinking critically.

Photo of Victoria Climbie

Victoria Climbie

Age: 9
Tottenham, London, England

February 25, 2000

Victoria's mother asked a relative to take her from Ivory Coast to Britain so she would have a better life. Because she thought Victoria was possessed by witches, the relative mistreated and tortured her. The relative pled guilty to manslaughter. Read more & more

Jamuna Devi

Age: 75
Ajmer, India

Beaten up
May 7, 2008

She was blamed for someone's illness by a tantrik who claimed she did black magic. Over 20 people beat her with sticks in retribution. The culprits fled the village and police are investigating. Read more

Samuel Edem

Abuja, Nigeria

Lost Job
August 8, 2008

He was the head of the development agency for the oil-producing Niger Delta. He spent millions on witchcraft and burnt millions more in rituals to secure his position. He was fired from his job for misuse of funds. Read more & more & more

Newni Ekka

Sundergarh, Orissa, India

May 30, 2004

This mother of four was forced to eat human excrement and paraded naked through the streets of her village after being accused of witchcraft. Read more & more

Fawza Falih

Age: 80
Quraiyat, Saudi Arabia

Sentenced to death
April 2, 2006

Even though "witchcraft" is not defined in Saudi law, a court convicted this woman of it and sentenced her to death based solely on accusations. Many human rights organizations have attempted to intervene to have the sentence set aside. Read more & more

Bajru Hembram

Age: 60
Abhaypur village, Orissa, India

Murdered (decapitation)
April 8, 2008

Three tribal youths blamed a fellow villager for causing a recent death through witchcraft. They beheaded the man and paraded his severed head around the village. They were arrested. Read more & more

Baba Jallow & 7 others

Age: 28
Serekunda, Gambia & Ghana

Beaten to death
October 9, 2003

He was accused of stealing another man's penis through sorcery, and a mob of ten people beat him to death for it. Seven other cases like this happened in Ghana in 1997. Read more

Photo of Harrison Johnson

Harrison Johnson

Age: 2
Tampa, Florida

Died (untreated wasp stings)

Harrison was stung by wasps while his family was visiting church friends. They prayed over the boy but did not seek medical help because they believe doctors practice witchcraft. When an EMT was called 7 hours later, the boy was beyond help. Read more & more

Makiesse Jonas

Age: 10
Uige, Angola

Abused, shunned by his family
December 12, 2006

From the age of six, family members accused him of witchcraft. What followed was years of abuse, including being almost burnt alive. An uncle saved him and put him in a church shelter. Read more

Maramani Jugur

Age: 30
Badamathur, Orissa State, India

May 22, 2008

After a neighbor died, relatives accused an Indian mother of two of causing the death via witchcraft. They beat, gagged and burnt her to death in a remote tribal village. Three villagers were arrested. Read more & more

Gladys Kasito

Age: 63
Lilongwe, Malawi

House destroyed, beaten
February 2008

A seven year old boy had a swollen leg, and accused her of causing it via witchcraft. Her neighbors demolished her house and beat her up. Even her family will have nothing to do with her. Read more

Malita Khoviwa

Age: 54
Mulanje district, Malawi

Three months in jail
January 2008

A girl ran away from home and came to her for help. Later, a witchdoctor accused her of making the girl run. She was convicted of causing the girls disappearance. Read more

Diego Hernandez Lopez & family

Chiapas, Mexico

4 dead, 5 wounded
September 17, 2002

Locals accused Diego of practicing witchcraft. Someone decided to take justice into their own hand, stormed into the house shooting. Four adults were killed, three adults and two children wounded. Read more

Lakhan Majhi & his family

Age: 65, 60, 45, 35
Koilajuli Milanpur, Assam, India

Stoned & buried alive
June 7, 2008

When a neighbor died of a prolonged illness, villagers blamed him and accused him of witchcraft. He and his family were stoned and then buried alive in the jungle. When police arrived, everyone had fled. Read more

Chikumbutso Mponda


Five years in jail

He was convicted on allegations that his "magic plane" crashed while he was traveling in it. Read more

Amir Munda & family

Biswanath Charali, India

March 19, 2006

Accused of witchcraft Read more

Bihani Nagasia & 93 other people

Age: 70
Siliguri, India

November 2, 2004

Two youths accused her of practicing witchcraft, and took the law into their own hands. They beat her to death. This is unfortunately common in rural India, where many misfortunes are blamed on witches. Read more

Bibhisana Naik

Mayurbhanj, Orissa, India


He was murdered by a fellow villager in a blind rage when his wife delivered a blind baby. He was accused of destroying the newborn's eyesight through witchcraft. Read more

Domingos Pedro

Age: 12
Uige, Angola

Beaten, abandoned by his family, now homeless

Accused of witchcraft Read more

Veronica Vincent & her mother

Age: 50, 65
Zomba, Malawi

Died & poisoned
May 4, 2008

Four children (ages 6 to 8) accused them of witchcraft. An angry mob forced them to visit a witchdoctor. He administered an herbal remedy to Veronica, which caused her death. He was arrested. Read more

Alesi Yosefe

Age: 60
Mchinji district, Malawi

18 months in jail

Children in her area accused her of flying around the marketplace and practicing witchcraft. She was convicted under a 107 year old law and was sentenced to 18 months in jail. Read more

13 soccer fans

Age: 11 - 16
Butembo, Democratic Republic of Congo

September 14, 2008

A football club was losing to its local rivals. The goalkeeper incated some “fetishist” spells to weaken the opposing team. Many in this country believe in witchcraft, and the subsequent riot left 13 dead and others injured. Read more & more

14,000 children

Age: 5 to 15
Kinshasa, Congo

Abandoned by their families, homeless
1998 - 2007

Accused of witchcraft Read more & more

18 elderly Kenyans

Age: 60+
Meru district, Kenya

Died (lynched)
May 2008

Villagers in eastern Kenya lynched seven elderly men accused of witchcraft over a month, after linking them to mysterious deaths. Eleven other elderly women were lynched in western Kenya in May. Read more

19 albinos

Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

December 17, 2007

Some in this country believe albinos are victims of curses. Some witch doctors believe that albino body parts are useful for potions. The result has been at least 19 killings in 2007 and 2008. Read more & more

432 children

Age: 5 to 15
Mbanza Congo, Angola

Abandoned by their families, homeless

Accused of witchcraft Read more

47 children

Age: 0 - 14

2000 - 2005

Belief in witchcraft Read more & more

6 Nigerians

Bekpor Irruan, Boki, Cross River, Nigeria

Serious injuries
May 2008

When the first female pilot from the area died suddenly in an auto wreck, local youths rioted and took out their frustrations on people they suspected of being responsible via witchcraft. Read more

8 Indian villagers

Gereda, Ganjam, Orissa State, India

April 21, 2008

After some villagers fell ill, eight residents were accused of being responsible via witchcraft. They were beaten, their teeth were extracted with hammers and they were forced to eat human excrement. Read more & more

9 year old boy

Age: 9
Takoradi, Ghana

April 9, 2008

He complained of being hot and ate excessively. He was taken to a spiritualist who told his parents that he was possessed by witchcraft and could not be cured. He was kept in a room until he died. The parents were arrested. Read more

"Child B"

Age: 8
Hackney, London, England

Beaten, cut, chili rubbed in eyes
June 2005

Belief in witchcraft Read more

"Jane Doe"

Mount Hagen, Papua New Guinea

January 6, 2009

A woman was bound and gagged and set on fire because villagers suspected her of being a witch. Authorities say 50 people were killed in similar fashion here last year. Read more


Age: 9 months
Louisvale, South Africa

November 2001

The AIDS epidemic in Africa has spawned many quack cures. In one area, witch doctors say that sex with a small child can cure the disease. Needless to say, this results in tragedy. Read more & more

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