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Jury to hear openings in New Jersey ‘gay conversion’ trial

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JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — A jury in northern New Jersey is scheduled to hear opening arguments Wednesday in the fraud trial of a nonprofit that offers so-called ‘gay conversion’ therapy.

Four men and two of their mothers sued Jews Offering New Alternatives for Healing, under New Jersey’s consumer fraud laws in 2012.

The men contend the organization violated the laws by characterizing homosexuality as a mental disorder and claiming it could successfully change patients’ sexual orientation.

They say they underwent treatment that included being told to spend more time naked with their fathers and participating in role-playing in which they were subjected to anti-gay slurs in a locker room setting.

The nonprofit contends there’s still debate over whether human sexual orientation is changeable and that it isn’t an issue for courts to decide.