Number of reported cases At least 1 How do we calculate the number of cases


The Maldives does not have an HIV-specific law, but has a law that criminalises ‘malignant’ acts that pass on any communicable diseases. Penalties can include imprisonment not not exceeding 2 years, or exile not exceeding 2 years, or a fine.

The only reported case possibly relating to HIV criminalisation involved the arrest of a sex worker in 2012. The woman was visiting the Maldives as a tourist but was arrested for undertaking sex work. There is no evidence that the woman had HIV but media surrounding her case included statements from the Centre for Community Health and Disease Control about the risk of foreign sex workers transmitting HIV.


Penal Code

General disease law (active)
Relevant text of the law

Section 101. Spread of disease through malignant act

It is an offence for a person to malignantly act which he knows or has reasons to believe, causes infection of any disease dangerous to the public health of the society where such an act may be likely to cause such loss. The person who commits this offence shall be subjected to imprisonment of either description not exceeding 2 years or exile not exceeding 2 years or a fine.


This information was last reviewed in April 2020