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Cablegate: Darou Mousty Homosexuals Condemned by Local Court

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RR RUEHMA RUEHPA
DE RUEHDK #1266 2801227
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 071227Z OCT 09
FM AMEMBASSY DAKAR
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 3165
INFO RUEHZK/ECOWAS COLLECTIVE

UNCLAS DAKAR 001266

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PINS KDEM ECON SG
SUBJECT: Darou Mousty Homosexuals Condemned by Local Court

1. (SBU) Summary: In an August decision the Court of Louga (in North
central Senegal) sentenced three adults and two minors for
"unnatural sex acts." One adult was sentenced to five years and two
others to two years. As for the minors, one was found guilty but
received no prison sentence. He was remanded into his parents'
custody under the supervision of the social services branch of the
Ministry of Justice. The case was dropped for a second minor who
contended that he was forced to have sex by his partner who managed
to escape arrest. End Summary.

Arrested following denunciation
--------------------------

2. (SBU) On June 18, gendarmes patrolling in Darou Mousty (one of
the holy cities of the Mouride Islamic brotherhood) received a
tipoff around 20:00 indicating that a couple (male) located in the
neighborhood of Escale were homosexuals. The gendarmes arrested the
couple, Amsa Gueye, 30, and Massamba Gaye, 17. The interrogation of
the couple by gendarmes led to the arrest of another homosexual
couple (male), Matar Gueye, 21, and Ousmane Gaye, 24(who turned out
to be the brother of Massamba Gaye). They also arrested Khadim
Gueye, 15, but his partner, Thierno Wade, escaped arrest. The two
minors were interrogated in the presence of their parents. After
the investigation by the gendarmes, the Prosecutor of the Regional
Court of Louga charged all five with having committed "unnatural
sex," a crime listed in Article 319 of the Criminal Code of Senegal.
Amsa Gueye and Matar Gueye have consistently denied the charges
despite the testimony of Madiop Gueye, a witness who testified
against them.

Heavy Sentences
---------------

3. (SBU) The Court of Louga first prosecuted the adults and rendered
a verdict on August 12, 2009. Amsa Gueye was found guilty of
"unnatural sex" and "enticing a minor into sexual intercourse." He
was condemned to five years of imprisonment. Ousmane Gaye and Matar
Gueye were found guilty of "unnatural sex" and condemned each to two
years imprisonment. The minors, as required by law, were prosecuted
behind closed doors by a special jurisdiction for minors and their
verdict was rendered on August 28, 2009 at the Regional Court of
Louga. The court dropped the case against Khadim Gueye. The latter
told the court that Thierno Wade had forced him to have sex and this
was the only time he ever did. The other minor, Massamba Gaye, was
found guilty of "unnatural sex" but the Court did not give him a
prison sentence and he was left in the custody of his parents under
supervision of the AEMO (local social service run by the Ministry of
Justice to accompany and reeducate children in difficulty).

COMMENT
-------

4. (SBU) This case further illustrates that when it comes to
homosexuality, Senegal's legal authorities continue to carry out the
will of religious groups and a conservative public opinion. During
the year, the former Minister of Justice and newly appointed Foreign
Minister Madicke Niang reiterated that the government was totally
opposed to decriminalizing homosexuality. Thus although the word
"homosexuality" is not in the Criminal Code, the crime of "unnatural
sex" allows judges to condemn homosexuals and when they do they tend
to mete out extremely heavy sentences. Moreover, the failure by law
enforcement to prosecute a gang of youths who disinterred a
homosexual in the city of Thies exemplifies the reluctance of the
government to stand up to Senegal's more conservative elements and
their growing intolerance for the country's gay community.
SMITH

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