The initial clash between Moors and Christians is pretty fierce. | Miquel À. Cañellas

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The Moors and Christians battle, which is the climax to Pollensa's La Patrona fiestas, has occasionally resulted in minor injuries. These have been accidental. In 2017, however, injuries inflicted on a 'Christian' have been deemed by a court to have been entirely deliberate.

A 46-year-old man has been fined 1,080 euros for having caused injury. The aggression, the court in Palma has concluded, "was not by chance and nor could it have been justified by any popular custom". The defendant, who acknowledged in court that he is a Muay Thai martial arts expert, delivered a blow with a knee that was "totally out of context". "There was obvious and unacceptable excess. It was a blow by the knee made by someone who knew how to give this. There can have been no other intention than to cause harm."

Video evidence was shown in court of the initial clash between Moors and Christians. The defendant and the complainant were on the respective frontlines. The attacker, a Moor, was brandishing a sword and jumped into the air and kneed the other man in the chest. He fell to the ground on his back. His injuries were such that he was to require fourteen rehabilitation sessions.

The defendant admitted at the trial that he had collided with the opponent, but denied having kneed him. He said that, although there are no written rules, the first confrontation must be "fierce". He had no intention of harming the other man and apologised. For his part, the complainant said that the defendant went straight for him and hit him hard in the chest with his knee.

The judge concluded: "The defendant's thesis that he had no intention of causing injury cannot be accepted. If one jumps into a person's chest using one's knee, the result is predictable and to be expected. The video leaves little room for doubt."