Police arrested 53 people for allegedly attending a gay marriage in Zaria, Nigeria on Saturday.
The defendants were brought before a magistrate’s court on Wednesday in Chediya-Zaria, Kaduna State, local media reports.
The prosecutor, Mannir Nasir, said that the accused were arrested at a motel and were being charged for conspiracy, unlawful assembly and belonging to a gang of unlawful society.
The accused pleaded not guilty to the charges, and their counsel, Yunusa Umar, asked the court to release them on bail. due to their “tender age”
Chief Magistrate Auwal Musa-Aliyu granted the accused N500,000 bail, with one surety each in the sum, who must be a blood relation to the accused.
He ordered that each surety must present two passport size photographs, valid identity card, bank account number, letter of credence from a traditional ruler, a 2015 utility bill and a valid GSM number, a local source stated.
The Chief Magistrate have adjoined the case until May 8 for further hearing.
Nigeria strictly outlaws same-sex relationships. In recent years the conditions of imprisonment have become wider, and the punishment greater for individuals who go against the law. Different regions of the country have different consequences for people engaging in homosexual acts, from 14 years imprisonment in Southern Nigeria to capital punishment for men in areas under Sharia Islamic Law.