What is Forced Marriage?
Forced Marriage is when you are put under pressure, physically, emotionally, or psychologically to marry. This could be by threats of physical or sexual violence or by manipulating you emotionally by claiming you are bringing shame on the family or threats that you will be cut off from your family.
What can start out as an ‘arranged’ marriage can quickly escalate into forced marriage. It is not uncommon for one of the participants to change their mind, even on the wedding day only for the families to force them to go through with it. Forcing someone into marriage is a criminal offence in the UK, this includes taking someone abroad to marry or marrying someone who does not have capacity to consent to the marriage.
Forced marriage situations could also involve, for example, the specific offences of:
- False imprisonment;
- Common assault, actual/grievous bodily harm;
- Threats to kill;
- Child abduction;
- Rape or other sexual offences
- Immigration offences;
- Marriage offences;
- People trafficking; and
- Controlling, causing or inciting prostitution.
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