Leeds Man Jailed Over Criminal Transmission Of HIV
A man who recklessly infected a woman with HIV has been jailed following an investigation by safeguarding officers in Leeds.
X was sentenced to three years and four months imprisonment at Leeds Crown Court today after he pleaded guilty to Section 20 grievous bodily harm at a hearing on April 18.
X, aged 43, of Armley, had unprotected sex with the victim without telling her he was HIV positive, and while he was not adhering to his medication regime.
The victim had searched online and found a news article from October 2020 when X had been given an 18-month prison term for disclosing private sexual images with intent to cause distress, two counts of harassment and breaching a restraining order, all in relation to two previous partners.
In mitigation given in court at the time and reported in the article, it was mentioned that he had HIV.
The victim became ill shortly after making the discovery and was diagnosed with the condition.
When she confronted him, he denied it and claimed that she had been aware.
The victim contacted the police in August 2021 and officers from Leeds District Safeguarding Unit launched an investigation.
X was arrested and repeatedly denied the offence over the course of several interviews. He told officers that the victim had been aware of his condition and that she had chosen to take the risk.
He also claimed he was regularly taking his medication, but extensive enquiries uncovered overwhelming evidence to the contrary.
Medical records showed he often missed appointments and failed to collect medication to manage his condition and reduce his risk of infection to sexual partners.
The victim was supported throughout the investigation by the officer in the case and Leeds Domestic Violence Service and advised on access to wider support for her physical and psychological wellbeing.
The investigation team liaised closely with complex case specialists at the Crown Prosecution Service to ensure the strongest evidential package.
X continued to deny his guilt from the initial report in August 2021 until his plea hearing in April this year, which had added to the victim’s distress.
Detective Chief Inspector Sarah Lambert, who heads Leeds District Safeguarding, said: “It is important that we recognise the courage that the victim has shown in coming forward to report an offence of this nature.
“She has described herself as being completely devastated by his actions, which will continue to have a significant impact on her life.
“We hope that seeing him held criminally responsible will provide her with some degree of reassurance as she continues to move on with her life.
“This was a complex and challenging case to investigate, and we hope it will help to demonstrate our commitment to getting justice for victims.”