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  • Malaysian Muslim lovers face caning for car sex

    Islamic court sentences couple to six strokes each

    A Malaysian Islamic court has sentenced a young unmarried Muslim couple to six strokes each of the cane after they were caught trying to have sex in a car, a report said Friday.

    The Sharia High Court in central Selangor state also fined Mohamad Shahrin Abdul Majid, 29, and his girlfriend Nadiah Najat Hussin, 24, 5,000 ringgit (1,400 dollars) each, the New Straits Times reported.

    The amorous couple, who pleaded guilty, were clad only in undergarments when they were caught in a carpark, the report said.

    Premarital sex is banned under Islamic law.

    Judge Mohammad Khalid Shaee said the caning sentence would not be carried out immediately pending an appeal.

    He then advised the pair to marry as soon as possible.

    "You are still young ... after Hari Raya (the Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of Ramadan) seek consent from both your parents to marry," he was quoted as saying by the New Straits Times.

    Court officials could not be reached for comment.

    Malaysia, a multicultural country with large Chinese and Indian communities, has a dual-track legal system and sharia courts can try Muslim Malays -- who make up 60 percent of the population -- for religious and moral offences.

    The latest case came as another religious court on Tuesday sentenced an Indonesian man to be caned and jailed for drinking alcohol, weeks after triggering a furore by ordering a woman to be caned for the same offence.

    In the past, several religious authorities and the state government in Malaysia have tried to recruit spies to catch couples engaged in "immoral" activities, such as premarital sex, in hotels, parks and public places.

    Those plans were widely criticised by rights groups, forcing the government to step in and order that the team of sex snoops be disbanded to avoid invading citizens' privacy.

    You are still young ... after Hari Raya (the Eid al-Fitr holiday marking the end of Ramadan) seek consent from both your parents to marry

    Judge Mohammad Khalid Shaee