Vichy regime.Under the guise of protecting young people, the Vichy government in 1942 introduced a distinction between the age of consent for heterosexual and homosexual sex.That age was set at 13 for heterosexual couples (though raised to 15 a few years later), while it was set at 21 for homosexuals.Same-sex couples risked prison until 1982, with convictions including “moral indecency” and “leading a minor to debauchery”.Sociologist and historian Antoine Idier told the French news agency AFP: “Judges used a much broader criminal arsenal and all kinds of articles to repress homosexuality, even though they were not explicitly intended to do so.”It is estimated that between 1942 and 1982, some 50,000 people were convicted for homosexual offences.Of those, 10,000 were targeted under under Article 331 of the Penal Code. They were almost exclusively men from the working class.
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