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Gay man charged with spreading HIV

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  1. Dr Catherine Dodds 4 Apr 2006, 2:17pm

    Dear Editor, This response relates to the following story on your website: “Gay man charged with spreading HIV”.The first line of the story claims that a florist was convicted of “deliberately” infecting another with HIV. This is an error, and should be removed from the story immediately with a clarification. Similar convictions in this country to date have been undertaken under Section 20 of the Offences Against the Person Act which specifies recklessness. If the actions of this man (or the others who have been convicted) had been proven to be deliberate, they would have been charged and convicted under the more serious Section 18 offence of this act that specifies intent. As such, penultimate paragraph in your story is also wrong, and the word deliberately should be replaced with recklessly. There is a further error here, as six others have been convicted of reckless transmission in the past three years, not four as is stated in the story. I also am mystified as to the inclusion of Det Con Toms’ statement that: “He gave us no indication as to his intent or motivation”. Firstly, as I have already pointed out, there is no intent necessary to be proven in a recklessness charge, and secondly (as I would expect Pinknews to be aware), making a decision about how and when to disclose a recent HIV diagnosis to a sexual partner is a very difficult process that can often require support from experts. Why on earth this is being pitched as an ‘intentional’ crime by your website is beyond me, as nothing at all in this charge and guilty plea would indicate this is the case. I expect that you will revise your story accordingly on the website as soon as is practically possible. Regards, Catherine Dodds

  2. Does anyone, including Dr Dobbs have any idea how to get in touch with Mark James…or indeed anyone who can get a message to him?

  3. Richard could of used a better name

  4. Claud – Not sure what you mean? Are you able to help?

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