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Crime

Daryll Rowe loses appeal over infecting men with HIV

Ella Braidwood November 6, 2018

Daryll Rowe, who was convicted of deliberately infecting five men with HIV, has lost his appeal to overturn his life sentence.

Rowe, 28, of Brighton, was jailed handed a minimum jail sentence of 12 years in April.

Judges at the Court of Appeal turned down his case, ruling that the grounds for challenging his conviction were “unarguable,” reports BBC.

The hairdresser, who met many of his victims on Grindr, became the first person in the UK to be convicted for deliberately spreading the virus.

Rowe met most of his victims on gay dating app Grindr. (Leon Neal/Getty)

He was found guilty of intentionally infecting five men with HIV and attempting to give five other men the virus between October 2015 and December 2016.

Rowe was diagnosed with HIV in April 2015, when he was living in Edinburgh, after a sexual health clinic informed him that a former partner had the virus.

He was found guilty of all charges at Lewes Crown Court during a six-week trial.

The court heard how he insisted on unprotected sex with his partners and intentionally damaged the condoms of men who refused.

While sentencing Rowe, Judge Christine Henson QC said: “The messages you sent make it crystal clear you knew exactly what you were doing.

“As well as the physical offences, it is clear, for the victims, the psychological effects are immense.

“I cannot see how and when you will no longer be a danger to gay men.”

During the trial, prosecutor Caroline Carberry QC described his crimes as “a cynical and deliberate campaign to infect other men with HIV.”

The court was told that Rowe sent mocking text messages telling partners he was HIV-positive and that they could be at risk.

He told one victim, who was later diagnosed as HIV-positive, “Maybe you have the fever… I have HIV LOL.”

In a phone call to one partner, who had insisted they use a condom, Rowe told him: “I ripped the condom. You’re so stupid. You didn’t even know.”

Another victim said he was pressured into bareback sex outdoors and feared Rowe would attack him.

Daryll Rowe targeted men in England and Scotland. (Stock photo)

Doctors said he was coping well with the diagnosis, but became concerned when he refused antiretroviral drugs that can make those infected less contagious, jurors heard.

“He was warned he could be prosecuted for passing [HIV] on or even putting someone at risk of contracting HIV from him,” prosecutors told the court.

Rowe refused to take HIV medication prescribed, meaning he was able to infect others with the virus.

People with HIV who take appropriate medication have an undetectable viral load and cannot infect others.

The court heard that Rowe believed he could cure himself of HIV by drinking his own urine and keeping to a vegan diet.

More: appeal, daryll rowe, gay sex, HIV

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