8 jailed on homosexuality charges in Morocco, Egypt

Ray Cole (Photo courtesy of Facebook)
Ray Cole (Photo courtesy of Facebook)

Eight more people have been sentenced to prison time in north Africa on homosexuality-related charges — two in Morocco on Oct. 2 and six in Egypt on Sept. 25.

MOROCCO — Ray Cole and Jamal Jam Wald Ness
Sentenced to four months in prison

The Guardian reports in an article headlined “British man jailed for four months in Morocco ‘for being gay’ “:

Ray Cole, 70, was arrested while on holiday, according to his son Adrian, who said that authorities in the north African country had been reluctant to even reveal where his father was.

He posted a picture of the Central prison in Marrakesh, where he said his father was being held. “My father has a spot on the floor … But that’s quite reasonable, after all he is a gay and had the temerity to visit Morocco as a tourist for a holiday,” he wrote.

The Times reported that Cole was arrested with Jamal Jam Wald Ness, “a local man, whom he had gone to Marrakesh to visit” and that both men were sentenced to four months in prison.

The Moroccan Criminal Code (Article 489) provides for punishments of 6 months to 3 years imprisonment  for “licentious acts or against nature with an individual of the same sex.”  See more information below.

Click on the image for the blog’s list of 168+ people in prison or awaiting trial for homosexuality.
Click on the image for the blog’s list of 247+ people in prison or awaiting trial for homosexuality.

EGYPT — Six unnamed men
Sentenced to two years in prison for advertising a site for sex

BuzzFeed reported:

Six men were sentenced by an Egyptian court on [Sept. 25] to two years in prison with labor for allegedly advertising their apartment on Facebook for men to have sex with each other for a fee of $200 per night, reports the state-owned Egyptian news site Ahram Online based on information from ‘a judicial source.’

This case may be the first case in which Egyptians have been caught on social media for charges of homosexuality, something human rights activists have warned could become widespread as the Egyptian government widens its crackdown on LGBT rights.

Since October, around 80 people are known to have been arrested on allegations of homosexuality, including eight men who are due in court [Sept. 27] for appearing in a video that shows a couple of men exchanging rings that made headlines throughout the Arabic press as a ‘gay wedding.’

No outcome has been reported of the trial of those involved in the reported “gay wedding” video. See more information below.


These are recent accounts of homosexuality-related convictions in Morocco, as noted in this blog’s list, “99 who are in prison for being gay, 148 more awaiting trial.”

Two men get 3 years in prison
3 years in prison. Sentenced May 4, 2013.

Gay Maroc reported that two men were sentenced May 4, 2013, to three years in prison for homosexuality — the maximum penalty.

Location of Fkih Ben Salah in Morocco (Map courtesy of Google)
Location of Fkih Ben Salah in Morocco, where sex men were sentenced to up to three years in prison on homosexuality-related charges. (Map courtesy of Google)

Father protests; six men sentenced
Sentences of 1 to 3 years in prison, imposed May 14, 2014.

Six men in Fqih Bensalah in central Morocco were sentenced to up to three years in prison for being homosexuals and for violations related to sex and alcohol. They were arrested after the father of one of the men filed suit, accusing three of them of inciting his son into becoming a homosexual. They were sentenced to prison terms of one to three years for homosexuality and on charges including “incitement to prostitution,” driving while intoxicated and being “drunk on the street,”

Dozens more go unreported in Morocco

Most homosexuality-related trials in Morocco are not publicized. According to an Associated Press account, the Ministry of Justice reported that 81 such trials occurred in 2011. The Moroccan LGBT activist group Kifkif says that more than 5,000 homosexuals have been put on trial since the country’s independence in 1956. That’s an average of about 86 per year.

This blog has not been able to verify those figures.


These are accounts of some of the recent homosexuality-related convictions in Egypt, as noted in this blog’s list, “99 who are in prison for being gay, 148 more awaiting trial.”  Because of the recent crackdown on LGBTI Egyptians, many more convictions are likely in the near future.

4 men sent to prison for 3 to 8 years for ‘deviant parties’

A court sentenced four men to up to eight years in prison on April 7, 2014, for practicing homosexuality, a judicial official said. Prosecutors had accused the men of holding “deviant parties” and dressing in women’s clothes. Three were sentenced to eight years and the fourth to three years in prison.

3 to 9 years in prison after police raid a party
Ten people were arrested in November 2013 at party in a residential area of the western Cairo suburb known as 6 October City. One male defendant was sentenced to nine years in prison; other male defendants, to three years. One woman was acquitted.

Written by Colin Stewart

Colin Stewart is a 45-year journalism veteran living in Southern California. He is the president of the St. Paul’s Foundation for International Reconciliation, which supports LGBTQ+ rights advocacy journalism, Erasing 76 Crimes. Contact him at [email protected]

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