Police in South Yorkshire have secured the first ever forced marriage order to protect a man, after his family promised he would marry when he was just 5 years old.
The man, aged 19, had received “threats for not complying” to the pre-arranged marriage, police said.
Officers also obtained protection orders for the man’s three younger siblings as a “preventative tactic”.
Detective Inspector Suzanne Jackson explained in a statement: “Whilst we have issued a number of forced marriage protection orders for both girls and women across South Yorkshire, this is the first order we have issued to protect a man.
“This case represents a huge step forward in our ongoing commitment to raising awareness of and working to prevent honour based abuse.
“In instances of honour based abused it is often assumed it only happens to girls and women, however there are also many boys and young men who are victims as well.”
DI Jackson added: “Understandably it can be very difficult for children and victims who often feel unable to report and potentially prosecute their parents.
Forced marriage protection orders were introduced in 2014 and those convicted of the offence can be jailed for up to seven years.
A person can apply for a protection order if they or someone else is being threatened with a forced marriage or if they are in a forced marriage.
The order is unique to each case and contains legally binding conditions, and directions that change the behaviour of those trying to force someone into marriage.
Earlier this year a mother was jailed for four-and-a-half years for forcing her 17-year-old daughter to marry a relative nearly twice her age.