There have been no known HIV criminalisation cases in the Marshall Islands to date, although there is an HIV-specific law which states that a person who knows they are HIV-positive who purposefully or through gross negligence transmits HIV is guilty of a criminal offence. The law appears to limit conditions to cases where HIV transmission is alleged to have occurred. It is unclear how ‘gross negligence’ might be defined. The offence carries a significant penalty: a fine of up to $100,000 and/or a life of solitary confinement under the care of the Ministry of Health Services. An accused may also be liable for civil damages.
Communicable Diseases Prevention and Control Act 1988
Section 1511 – Offense for Transmission of AIDS or HIV
Any person knowingly infected with AIDS or HIV, who purposefully or through gross negligence transmits such disease to another person, shall be guilty of a criminal offense, and shall upon conviction be liable to a fine not exceeding $100,000 or to a life of isolated confinement under the care of the Ministry of Health Services, or both. In addition, any such offender shall be liable to civil damages and any other rights and remedies which a victim may have at law or equity.
Our thanks to Australian law firm Hall & Wilcox for their research assistance to confirm current relevant legislation.