According to lab results, the substance was K2, a type of synthetic marijuana that is totally legal in Kuwait, as the family has continued to stress. Regardless, the women were held in prison for eight months before being sentenced to 20-25 years in prison on January 12, 2016.
Though it sounds like the nightmarish plot of Brokedown Palace, this story is horrifyingly true. Although the K2 was tested in a German lab, and even though it isn’t illegal in Kuwait, at their sentencing, Coverson and Joseph were charged for possession of one pound of a marijuana/ hashish mix.
According to Monique and Larissa’s families, their imprisonment has nothing to do with drug possession, but rather with their sexual orientation and love for each other. So far, their lawyer has only demanded more money from the family without providing any results, which Monique’s mother considers to be akin to extortion.
At this point, the women’s families are desperate to bring them home, arguing that the police evidence was tampered with so as to imprison the girls for their homosexuality.
Under Kuwaiti law, male homosexuality is considered debauchery and is punishable with up to six years in prison. LGBT people in Kuwait do not experience the same freedoms as they might find in other countries regarding their orientation, even though the country as a whole is considered more socially liberal than other Middle Eastern countries.