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Malawi Court Refuses to Hear Case of Gay Couple


A gay couple who held Malawi's first public same-sex wedding and were arrested for "gross indecency" learned the country's Constitutional Court has refused to hear their case, Agence France-Presse reports.

Tiwonge Chimbalanga and Steven Monjeza were arrested in December in the conservative African country, where homosexuality is a criminal offense. Last month an attorney for the couple argued that the law violated their constitutional right to privacy, belief, and self-expression. The constitutional court's chief justice, however, ruled Tuesday that the case is merely a criminal proceeding.

This decision leaves the couple behind bars waiting for the March 22 verdict in their criminal trial. If convicted, they face up to 14 years in prison.

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