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Man With HIV Charged For Lying About Sexual History At Blood Donation, Didn’t Know Oral Sex Is Sex

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Source: NPR & Very Well Health

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A HIV-positive man in Singapore donated blood during the Covid-19 pandemic, but declared that he never had sex with another man before as he thought “sex” did not include oral sex.

However, the 37-year-old man did in fact have oral sex with a man in India in 2017.

Upon donating his blood, on 3 May 2020, his blood tested positive for HIV and was not used. He was then charged last month under the Infectious Diseases Act for giving false information linked to a blood donation.

He appeared in court yesterday (3 March) with the intention of pleading guilty and even brought his luggage as he was ready to go to jail, reported CNA.

During the court proceedings, the prosecutor read out the statement of facts in full. The man, who cannot be named due to a gag order to protect his identity, had gone to [email protected] on 3 May 2020 and had filled out a Donor Health Assessment Questionnaire.

One of the questions was, “In your entire lifetime: Male Donors: Have you had sex with another man?”, to which he answered “no”.

On the first page of the document, “sex” was defined as “various penetrative acts including oral sex”, but the court heard that signatures were not required on the first page and the man claimed he had overlooked that part.

A doctor had confirmed his answers with him, and he affirmed that they were truthful.

However, his blood was tested and confirmed as infected with HIV. The doctor then explained to him that oral sex was considered sex, after which the man admitted that he had unprotected oral sex with a man on a bus in 2017.

Although the man had intended to plead guilty, the judge rejected his plea as he qualified it by saying that he did not know that oral sex was considered sex at the time. This means that he did not knowingly give a false statement.

The man, who is a foreigner, told the judge that he has been unemployed for eight months and can no longer work in Singapore. The sole breadwinner for six dependents in his home country said all his savings had been spent and only has S$250 (RM760) left for rent or food.

As he is now an HIV patient, he said he cannot afford the treatment, which is not subsidised for him as he is a foreigner.

“Once I came to know about this, I was so depressed (over) the severity of the disease,” he said.

He said he had answered “no” to the question in the form as he had a “wrong perception”, but agreed with what the prosecutor said.

“Now I’m suffering from this disease. If it (had) been transfused to someone else, they will also be (suffering),” he said.

“I didn’t want to hurt anyone, or release spread of this disease or anything,” he said.

“I wanted to in fact help the country during the pandemic, during the crisis. When I went, it was during COVID time and the blood supply was very (little).”

Meanwhile, the prosecution is seeking at least three months’ jail and a fine of S$10,000 (RM30,429), but acknowledged that the accused admitted to the offence when first asked by the doctor. The man will return to court on 12 March for a pre-trial conference.

The penalty for giving false information relating to a blood donation is a maximum jail term of two years, a fine of up to S$20,000 (RM60,859), or both.

 

Also read: 6 Men Get Infected With HIV After Having Sex With M’sian Man Who Lied that He Tested Negative

6 Men Get Infected With HIV After Having Sex With M'sian Man Who Lied that He Tested Negative - WORLD OF BUZZ

Source: Healthline


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