Man who helped liberalise laws on homosexuality in NI loses his seat

The man who took a legal challenge to Europe to change the law on homosexuality in Northern Ireland has lost his council seat.

Jeffrey Dudgeon (Ulster Unionist Party) had been running to defend his seat in the Balmoral DEA of Belfast.

He received 660 votes at the first stage of the count and was unable to gain enough transfers from other candidates to stay in the race.

In what has been a disastrous election for his party in Belfast, Mr Dudgeon was eliminated on the third stage of the count, following a recount of that stage.

In 1981, Mr Dudgeon took a case to the European Court of Human Rights, arguing the law that criminalised male homosexuality contravened the European Convention on Human Rights.

The court ruled in his favour and the law in Northern Ireland was changed, bringing the region into line with the rest of the UK.

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