Canadian with HIV gets life-term for causing death of two women

April 5th, 2009 - 11:27 am ICT by IANS  

Toronto, April 5 (IANS) A Canadian with HIV, who had unprotected sex with dozens of women leading to the death of two of them, has been found guilty of first-degree murder by a court at Hamilton city near here.
In its weekend verdict, the court found Johnson Aziga, 52, guilty of causing the death of two women by spreading HIV though unprotected sex with them.

A former employee of the provincial Ontario government, Ugandan-born Aziga was diagnosed with HIV in 1996.

After his HIV positive status was confirmed, he was obligated by Canadian laws to warn his sexual partners about his condition. But the 52-year-old went to have unprotected sex with 13 women, including his colleagues in office and bar girls. About 20 other women who had sex with him could not be traced.

Seven of these 13 women tested positive for HIV, with two of them succumbing to the disease.

Aziga was slapped with two counts of murder charges and 11 counts of sexual assault charges.

The court accepted the prosecution’s argument that Aziga caused the death of two women by failing to warn them about his HIV condition. When the trial began in October last year, a health official had told the court that after Aziga tested positive for HIV in 1996, he was instructed to practice safer sex by disclosing his HIV status to sexual partners.

The official said Aziga again came to their attention in 2002 when a newly HIV-diagnosed woman named him as her sex partner. The health department hauled him up and forced him to reveal the names, addresses and phones of all his sexual partners under the Health Protection and Promotion Act (HPPA) which made safer sex mandatory for him.

The health official added that their department received yet another report in 2003 about another woman who also named Aziga as her sexual partner after she tested positive for HIV.

Aziga’s former wife also told the court that the couple were told by nurses to use condoms after he tested positive in 1996. She said they practised safer sex till they divorced in 1999.

Aziga automatically faces life behind bars, with no possibility of parole for 25 years.

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