Forced marriage outlawed

Lewes MP and Crime Prevention Minister Norman Baker has launched a new law making it a criminal offence to force someone to marry against their will.

New legislation on forced marriage came into effect on Monday.

Mr Baker said: “Marriage should be about two people deciding they want to live together because they love each other. To force someone into marriage to a person they don’t want to be with against their will is a corruption of marriage.

“Moreover it is in effect a life sentence for the person forced to marry, who at worst will then become a domestic servant by day and a sex slave by night.

“Forced marriage has no place in a civilised society and no cultural explanations can justify its use. I am therefore delighted to launch this new law on behalf of the coalition government.”