TWO women have been been arrested by religious police in Malaysia under the country’s criminal code outlawing homosexuality.
Police became suspicious when they found a dildo in the room of the two students, aged 20 and 21, who were staying in a hotel room in the southern Malaysian city of Johor Bahru, reports Buzzfeed.
Trans* rights organisation Justice for Sisters has expressed concern over the arrests, and have reportedly tried to reach the two women to offer legal assistance.
The penalty if the women are found guilty of breaching Malaysia’s laws against homosexuality is up to three years in jail, a fine, and six lashes.
The two women were arrested as part of a larger raid that saw seven other reportedly heterosexual couples charged for violating religious laws against adultery and “close proximity”.
While the criminal code’s ban on homosexuality is a legacy of Malaysia’s colonial past, Sharia law has also been used to prosecute trans* people for “impersonating” women.