Gay Mexican-British man sentenced to prison in Qatar

By AFP   June 4, 2024 | 05:53 pm PT
A Mexican-British man, whose family alleged he was arrested in Qatar for being gay, has been sentenced to prison but can leave the country after paying a fine, the Mexican government said Tuesday.

Manuel Guerrero, an airline employee, was detained in February in the Gulf state, where homosexuality is illegal.

On Tuesday, a Qatari judge sentenced Guerrero to six months in prison, although he will not have to serve the time, Mexico's foreign ministry said, without revealing why.

It said that Guerrero, who had already been granted provisional release, would be allowed to leave Qatar after paying a fine of 10,000 riyals (US$2,700).

Guerrero's mother, as well as Mexican and British diplomatic and consular officials, attended the trial, according to the ministry, which did not specify the exact charges he faced.

Guerrero's family had urged the Mexican government to intervene in the case, alleging that he was entrapped by Qatari police using a fake profile on a gay dating app.

Guerrero, who has lived in Qatar for seven years, also accused the police of planting drugs in his apartment, his family said in February.

Qatari authorities did not respond to the allegations at the time.

Human rights group Amnesty International in February expressed its "deep concern" about Guerrero's arrest, which it said was made due to his sexual orientation.

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