World

Egyptian court acquits 26 men of 'debauchery' in trial over raid by police looking for gays

  • Some of 26 men, who were arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse, react after an Egyptian court acquitted them in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. The trial, which had caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.(AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

    Some of 26 men, who were arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse, react after an Egyptian court acquitted them in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. The trial, which had caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.(AP Photo/Amr Nabil)  (The Associated Press)

  • One of 26 men arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse celebrates after an Egyptian court acquitted them in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. The trial, which had caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.(AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

    One of 26 men arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse celebrates after an Egyptian court acquitted them in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. The trial, which had caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.(AP Photo/Amr Nabil)  (The Associated Press)

  • Relatives of 26 men who were arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse, celebrate after an Egyptian court acquitted them in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. The trial, which had caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.(AP Photo/Amr Nabil)

    Relatives of 26 men who were arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse, celebrate after an Egyptian court acquitted them in Cairo, Egypt, Monday, Jan. 12, 2015. The trial, which had caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.(AP Photo/Amr Nabil)  (The Associated Press)

An Egyptian court has acquitted 26 men who were arrested in a televised raid last month by police looking for gays at a Cairo public bathhouse.

The trial, which caused an uproar among activists and rights groups, captured public attention after a pro-government TV network aired scenes of half-naked men being pulled from the bathhouse by police.

Same-sex relations are not explicitly prohibited in Egyptian law. The men faced various charges, including "debauchery" and performing indecent public acts.

Monday's verdict came after only three hearings, during which families quarreled with journalists who tried to photograph their relatives in the dock.

Rights activists say 2014 was the worst year in a decade for Egypt's gay community, with at least 150 men arrested or put on trial.