Prosecutors in Nigeria’s Kaduna state on Thursday charged a group of 53 people with conspiring to celebrate a gay wedding, the media reported.

The accused, arrested last week, have denied the allegations, with their lawyers saying they were illegally detained, the BBC reported.

The court released the group on bail and the case was remanded to May 8.

Gay rights campaigners told the BBC that the group was attending a birthday party, not a wedding.

Homosexual acts are banned in the socially conservative Nigeria and are punishable by up to 14 years in jail.