Slovenia does not have an HIV-specific law, but bodily harm laws can be used to prosecute HIV ‘exposure’ and/or transmission.
There were no known HIV criminalisation cases in Slovenia until 2019 when a man living with HIV was convicted of attempted aggravated bodily harm (Article 123) for HIV ‘exposure’. Importantly, the provision criminalising attempts to commit offences (Article 34) was used in conjunction with the aggravated bodily harm provision, suggesting that the case was one of HIV ‘exposure’ rather than transmission.
In the case, the man was accused of having multiple sexual encounters with a man without using condoms, and received a sentence of one and a half years’ imprisonment for the HIV-related charge, however this was laid in conjunction with multiple other charges relating to sexual assault of a mentally disabled person, human trafficking, and dealing drugs, for which he received a total of eight years ‘imprisonment. It is understood the man was convicted despite having a low or undetectable viral load, but it is not clear from the judgment exactly how low his viral load was and whether this impacted the sentence given in relation to the HIV charge.
Article 123. Aggravated Bodily Harm
(1) Whoever inflicts bodily harm on another person or damages his health to such an extent that this might place the life of the injured person in danger or cause the destruction or permanent serious impairment of an organ or part of the body, the temporary serious weakness of a vital part or organ of the body, the temporary loss of his ability to work, the permanent or serious temporary diminution of his ability to work, his temporary disfigurement, or serious temporary or less severe but permanent damage to the health of the injured person shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not less than six months and not more than five years.
(2) If the injury under the preceding paragraph results in the death of the injured person the perpetrator shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not less than one and not more than ten years.
(3) Whoever commits the offence under paragraph 1 of this Article by negligence shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than two wears.
(4) The perpetrator, who commits the offence under paragraphs 1 or 2 of this Article through no fault of his own and in the sudden heat of passion provoked by assault or grave insult from the injured person shall be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than three years.
Article 34. Attempt
(1) Any person, who intentionally initiated a criminal offence but did not complete it, shall be punished for the criminal attempt, provided that such an attempt involved a criminal offence, for which the sentence of three years’ imprisonment or a heavier sentence may be imposed under the statute; attempts involving any other criminal offences shall be punishable only when so expressly stipulated by the statute.
(2) Against the perpetrator, who attempted to commit a criminal offence, the sentence shall be applied within the limits prescribed for such an offence or it may be reduced.
Our thanks to Slovenian organisation Legebitra for their research assistance to confirm current relevant legislation.