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Knowingly passing on an S(T)D(4 Posts)
Due to the sensitive nature of this issue, the other women involved and the currently unresolved legal and safe guarding issues surrounding this I may have to be more vague than I would like but please bare with me. If you recognise anyone involved or are one of the women involved in this issue please PM me straight away and I will ask that this post is removed.
I'd like to know from a legal point of view if anything can be done regarding this situation. There are 4 people currently involved
M is the man. M is an abuser and also a pathological liar
A, B and C are the women
A was in a relationship with M for around 8 months before having to go through a period of being severely immune compromised and bouts of neutropenia. Around 2 months into the period of being immune suppressed and around the third bout of neutropenia A developed herpes. A had only ever had genital sexual contact with 1 person before meeting M and that was protected. M claimed that he didn't have herpes and that A must have passed it on to him. A felt nothing could be proved and was so down trodden by the relationship and reason for being immune suppressed that she just accepted that she couldn't prove anything and left it. A accompanies M to the Dr but waits outside- M claims he discussed herpes with the Dr, looked at a sore and said that it looked like herpes (A realises that what was discussed during this appointment was probably not the herpes). A realises that even if she had caught herpes from the previous man she had sexual contact with them she would probably have had her first outbreak during the first bout of neutropenia.
Years later M is with B. M develops herpes. M said he has no idea and goes to a sexual health clinic to be tested and receives a response confirming that he has herpes. M maintains that he had no idea.
C is also with M (including a period where both B and C are having sex with M). C has developed the symptoms of herpes but has not yet had it confirmed.
I am aware of the following:
A large amount of the general population have genital herpes
Many people have genital herpes and carry it for a very long period of time before becoming symptomatic
Testing is via swabs during an active outbreak therefore decided to both be checked before engaging in unprotected sex would not have prevented this unless there was an active outbreak at the time
From the situation above:
M may or may not have known he had herpes before passing it on to A
M definitely knew he had herpes and passed it on to B, claiming he had no idea
M did not disclose that he had herpes to C before engaging in unprotected sexual activity with her.
From a legal stand point is there any hope for a civil case? Whilst there is clearly no case for A unless someone can come forward and say he was aware of the herpes before they met- he knew about the herpes before B and also C. He did not disclose his sexual health status to these women to enable them to make a decision regarding sexual activity based off this.
I also appreciate that genital herpes is not the end of the world, surely there must be something for knowing you have a STD and not disclosing this before having unprotected sex with someone?
I apologise I can not disclose too much further but hope I have given enough information.
Years later M is with B. M develops herpes.
Years later M is with B. B develops herpes.
I work (as an allied health professional) in Infectious Diseases. I can only say there have been convictions and imprisonments for having unprotected sex with persons while knowingly being HIV positive. I have not come across it in the context of other STDs (does not mean it hasn't happened). But the HIV convictions set a legal precedent.
Your 1st paragraph suggests legal action may already be underway in this case?
It is an offence to intentionally or recklessly infect someone with an STD. There is a case (R v Golding) in which the accused did not tell the victim that he had been diagnosed with genital herpes which he passed on to her. He was convicted of GBH. So M may have committed criminal offences. The question is whether it can be shown that he knew he had herpes and understood how it is transmitted. The same question would arise in a civil case, although the standard of proof needed for a civil case is lower (balance of probabilities rather than proof beyond reasonable doubt).
If the women in this case are contemplating civil action they need to consult a lawyer. Once in possession of all the facts they will be able to give an idea of the chance of success.
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