Saudi journalist arrested for 'gay party'

Published: March 28, 2013

A journalist and editor at a ‘well-known’ daily newspaper was arrested in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, for planning to attend a ‘gay party’, using make up and possession of alcohol.

The kingdom’s religious police known as the Commission for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice arrested the unnamed man during the weekend.

Several Saudi papers reported that during a routine patrol, members of the religious police noticed a car parked at the side of a road in the eastern part of the capital Riyadh.

The man was apparently caught while ‘applying makeup’ preparing himself for a ‘gay party’.

Verification of the man’s documents revealed that he was working as the ‘editor of a famous newspaper’, which the Saudi media left unnamed.

The religious police also found in his car three bottles of imported wine and women’s beauty products.

The man has been ‘transferred to Eastern Riyadh police station so it could further investigate and take the necessary action in such cases’.

It is unclear what charges will be brought against the man, but it is unlikely that he would be trialed for ‘sodomy’, which in some cases is punishable by death in Saudi Arabia, as conviction demands four witnesses to a sexual act or four confessions by the accused.

The religious police encourage reporting of any ‘deviant’ behavior and deliberately entrap people for homosexuality.

Last year the religious police arrested five gay men during a raid on a health club in the Kingdom’s capital, Riyadh following a tip-off.

Entrapment by the religious police does not necessarily lead to prosecution, but often results in life-long financial and/or sexual blackmail.

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