Yesterday we ran a story about a one Mark James (pictured), who is currently on the run after infecting his lover with HIV. Well, apparently we made some mistakes (yes, we’re human) and we apologize.
Thankfully a reader named Edwin J Bernard informed us of our erroneous ways. Here’s his comment:
“As a health educator/journalist who has followed the criminalisation of HIV transmission in the UK, I’d like to point out a major error with your ‘story’. Mark James was the eighth person in England and Wales to be convicted of ‘reckless’ HIV transmission, after he pleaded guilty. There is no crime of ‘knowingly’ infecting someone with HIV in England and Wales.
He was the first openly gay man to be convicted of this “crime.” He pleaded guilty because his inept lawyer recommeded he do so, after the Crown Prosecution Service said they had scientific evidence proving that James infected his ex-partner. However, this evidence was flawed, and a similar case which went to court a few months later (because the defendant had a smarter lawyer) led to a ‘not guilty’ verdict, because the Judge realised that scientific evidence is not enough to convict on. See: “Prosecution for reckless HIV transmission in England ends with not guilty verdict”
Mark James is not a danger to society, as the police suggest. He is the victim of an inept and flawed legal system. Between pleading guilty and his disappearance, he discovered how inept his lawyer had been, changed lawyers and tried to change his plea but the Judge would not allow this. Maybe others would also run – or take their own lives, which I fear is another possibility – in this situation?”
There. All better. Now, we’ve got to take this matter up with our source: Pink News UK. Good looking out, Edwin.
Related (and wrong): HIV Infector on The Run