ALENéON -

One of the first French gay men to marry under a landmark new law has been sent to prison for beating up his new spouse just hours after tying the knot.

Police in the northern city of Alencon said on Wednesday they had arrested the 22-year-old man after being called to the couple's home in the early hours of Sunday.

His partner testified that he had been head-butted and then repeatedly hit whilst lying on the ground in an attack which followed a heavy drinking session and was triggered by a row about the respective mother-in-laws.

The man, who also attacked and injured two policemen, appeared in court on Monday under a fast-track trial process.

Despite an appeal for leniency from his new spouse, he was given a two-year prison term, six months of which were suspended.

A law granting same-sex couples the right to marry and adopt children came into force in France in May. - Sapa-AFP