A gay couple face up to 100 lashings by cane after a neighbours reported them to police for having sex.
If found guilty the two men will be the first to be caned in Indonesia for gay sex, according to the Shariah police’s chief investigator.
The men, aged 23 and 20, were arrested in the provincial capital, Banda Aceh, on March 29.
Marzuki, who is leading the investigation, said the men had ‘confessed’ to being a gay couple after a video of the pair together was posted online by a neighbour.
The footage allegedly shows one of the men naked and visibly distressed as he calls for help on his phone, while his partner is repeatedly pushed by another man who prevents the couple from leaving the room.
Aceh is the only province in Muslim-majority Indonesia to practice Shariah law, which was a concession made by the national government in 2006.
A Shariah code, implemented two years ago, allows up to 100 lashes for morality offences, including gay sex.
Caning is also a punishment for adultery, gambling, drinking alcohol, women who wear tight clothes and men who skip Friday prayers.
Marzuki said residents in Banda Aceh’s Rukoh neighborhood were suspicious of the two men because they often seemed to be intimate.
‘Based on our investigation, testimony of witnesses and evidence, we can prove that they violated Islamic Shariah law and we can take them to court,’ he said.
Although homosexuality is not illegal in Indonesia, a judicial review is being considered by the Constitutional Court to criminalise sex outside marriage and sex between people of the same gender.
by Simon Robb for Metro.co.uk
Source – Metro