Ray Cole Morocco gay
Ray Cole, who is from Kent, went to Marrakesh to visit a manFacebook

A 69-year-old British man who was jailed in Morocco for committing "homosexual acts" has been released, his son has confirmed.

Ray Cole, from the town of Deal in Kent, was sentenced to four months in prison with his Moroccan partner Jam Wald Nass after images were discovered on his phone.

The couple were stopped by police at a bus stop in Marrakech on 18 September and detained on the grounds of suspected homosexuality.

"They accessed my father's phone, and inside one of the folders they found a photograph that they said was compromising," said his son, Adrian.

"Based on that, they were charged with homosexuality."

Cole's family was unaware of the arrest and thus raised the alarm that he had gone missing.

A #freeraycole Twitter hashtag and a Facebook page was set up calling for Cole's release.

His son said that his father had been "overwhelmed" by the international support for his release.

British campaigner for gay rights Peter Tatchell said that Moroccan police action against gay men in the country was increasing in line "with the rising visibility of LGBT people and the growing success of a pro-Islamist political party".

"Some people fear that the Moroccan authorities are making an example of Ray in response to concerns about sex tourism and to pander to popular prejudice," he said.

"It is very unusual for British tourists anywhere in the world to be imprisoned for homosexuality, extremely unusual for any western tourist to be subjected to investigations into their private emails and Facebook page and more unusual still that an arrest was made at a bus stop. Typically such arrests occur at raids on parties or private houses."

Homosexuality in Morocco

Homosexuality is illegal in Morocco.

According to article 489 of the Moroccan Penal Code, gay people face detention of up to three years and fines of up to 1,000 dirhams (£70).

Last May, six men were arrested for homosexuality acts. They were also convicted of prostitution and public drunkenness.