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Sunday 5 April 2009

Canada: Man found guilty in double-murder trial for sexual HIV transmission

Johnson Aziga has become the first person ever to be convicted of murder for sexually transmitting HIV.

The jury delivered their verdict late on Saturday after just three days of deliberation following a trial that lasted six months.

Story from The Hamilton Spectator, below.

More later.

Aziga guilty of murder
Becomes first HIV-positive man in Canada to be convicted of murder for recklessly spreading the virus that causes AIDS

The Hamilton Spectator
Apriul 4th 2009

A Hamilton jury rendered an historic legal verdict at 5 p.m. Saturday, making Johnson Aziga the first HIV-positive man in Canada and probably the world to be convicted of murder for recklessly spreading the virus that causes AIDS.

Aziga, 52, was found guilty as charged of two counts of first-degree murder and 10 counts of aggravated sexual assault, as well as being convicted of one count of attempted aggravated sexual assault.

The nine men and three women on the Superior Court jury deliberated about 25 hours over the course of two and a half days before arriving at their verdict.

The one count of aggravated sexual assault about which the jury had a reasonable doubt concerned a victim who had difficulty in the witness box remembering the dates when she first met Aziga and had unprotected sex with him.

The woman also had unprotected sex with a Brantford man who was subsequently found to be HIV positive and who carried the same rare African strain of HIV as Aziga.


Anonymous said...

I am puzzled that there appears to have been no discussion about the statistical likelihood (or lack thereof) of Mr. Aziga infecting this many partners (7 out of 11). Now, granted, we have no clear information (at least from the media) about the frequency or types of sex practised without protection, but it does seem to defy the odds: Studies cited for the estimated per-act risk for acquisition of HIV (see rate receptive penile-vaginal intercourse as 5 per 10,000 exposures to an infected source. Statistically, then, to infect even 5 women (he allegedly infected 7) Mr. Johnson should have had unprotected sex approximately 10,000 times. That's once a day for 27 years. He didn't have that much time, so let's allow him 3 times a day, every day, for 9 years. Prodigious, to say the least! But let's be realistic: while the risk factors certainly vary and can be higher by activity, for him to have infected women at this rate, the only explanation consistent with the statistics is that he was the source of blood transfusions for these women. This, obviously, was not the case. So does Mr. Johnson have some exceptionally virulent form of HIV that defies all known studies on rates of infection? Or should the court have been asked to consider expert evidence that the likelihood of Mr. Johnson being the source of infection for 7 out of 11 of his partners was statistically improbable, if not impossible.


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