On 05 May 2019, the Sultan of Brunei reportedly said his country would not impose the death penalty, appearing to back away from harsh punishments including death by stoning for gay sex and adultery under strict new laws that took effect last month. This moratorium, he said, will also be extended to cases under the new sharia-influenced (Islamic law) penal code [R1.6].
On 03 April 2019, the Sultanate is expected to introduce new (Sharia) laws that could see LGBT muslim people found guilty of same-sex relations, adultery, sodomy and rape whipped or stoned to death [R1.5].
The criminal law in Brunei Darussalam prohibits consensual sex between same-sex couples [R1.4].
Chapter 22 of the Penal Code, revised edition 2001, provides –
Unnatural offences – Section 377
“Whoever voluntarily has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any man, woman, or animal, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 10 years, and shall also be liable to fine. [S 12/97]
Explanation: Penetration is sufficient to constitute the carnal intercourse necessary to the offence described in this section.” [R1.4].
On 30 April 2014, it was reported that the introduction of the third phase of the new criminal code based on sharia law was set for late 2015. The law will allow the justice system to sentence offenders to death by stoning for crimes including adultery and gay sex [R1.3].
On 22 April 2014, the proposed law introducing death by stoning for homosexuality, adultery, rape, and declaring oneself to be non-Muslim was reportedly temporarily delayed. The United Nations human rights office has appealed to Brunei to hold off on introducing the new penal code [R1.2].
On 15 April 2014, it was reported that Brunei had adopted a new penal code effective 22 April calling for death by stoning for several crimes, including homosexuality, adultery, rape, and declaring oneself to be non-Muslim. Under international law, stoning people to death constitutes torture or other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and is thus clearly prohibited [R1.1].