herald

Saturday 17 November 2018

HIV man was arrested over 'credible' claim he raped woman at party

Two women were infected
Two women were infected

A man convicted of causing serious harm to two former partners by infecting them with HIV was arrested on suspicion of raping another woman in March, the Herald can reveal.

The African man, who is facing a life sentence after his conviction this week, is also the subject of a separate rape investigation by Terenure gardai.

The rape allegedly happened at a property in south Dublin on March 16.

It is claimed the man filmed the attack and that the alleged victim gave gardai a full statement in relation to the matter.

The man, who has been investigated over drug dealing activity in the past, was arrested and questioned for several hours at Terenure Garda Station.

A file has been sent to the DPP, who will decide in the coming weeks whether he will be charged in relation to the rape allegation, which senior sources describe as "credible".

The alleged victim arrived at a property for a "house party", but it is claimed she was attacked there shortly afterwards.

The rape investigation is separate to the crimes for which the HIV-infected man has already been convicted. Gardai believe he may have passed the virus to up to five other women through consensual sex.

The Herald revealed that gardai have already received solid information about one potential victim and hope to get a statement from her. It is not known if the alleged victim in the rape case has also been infected with HIV.

The man, who lives in Dublin, cannot be named to protect the identities of the complainants.

He had pleaded not guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to intentionally or recklessly causing serious harm to two women on dates between November 2009 and June 2010.

Mutations

Judge Martin Nolan refused a defence application for bail.

He said there was some risk of the man fleeing, and a custodial sentence was quite likely. The maximum penalty for the offence is life.

The judge remanded the man in custody, to appear again on July 26 for a sentence hearing.

In his closing speech on Tuesday, prosecutor Dominic McGinn submitted that expert witnesses had said all three parties had the same sub-type and mutations of the virus.

He suggested that the complainants had "remarkably similar" accounts and said that they had used condoms with previous partners.

Counsel reminded the jury that it had heard a condom "if used correctly effectively stops transmission" and that oral sex does not lead to infection.

He said there was no evidence that any of the complainants' previous partners had HIV.

He told the jury the man lied to the complainants' doctor about his positive diagnosis and "went through the charade" of being tested again in 2010.

"He knew full well he was HIV-positive. He was advised about having safe sex," Mr McGinn said. "He was given anti-viral medication and he didn't take it."

Mr McGinn suggested that the accused was guilty on both charges against him because he acted recklessly and caused serious harm to the complainants.

Defence counsel Paul Greene the jury that both complainants told lies in court about their previous sexual history. He suggested this meant their overall evidence was unreliable.

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