Bigamist jailed for infecting woman with HIV

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The Independent Online

An asylum-seeker who admitted infecting a 48-year-old woman with the Aids virus was jailed yesterday for six years. Kouassi Michel Adaye, from South Africa, was described by the judge as "despicable" and a danger to women.

Adaye, 37, who is originally from Ivory Coast, pleaded guilty at Liverpool Crown Court to recklessly inflicting grievous bodily harm. He is the second person to be convicted of causing biological grievous bodily harm under the 1861 Offences Against the Person Act. Mohammed Dica, 38, an asylum-seeker from Kenya, was sentenced to eight years imprisonment in November 2003 for knowingly infecting two women with HIV.

Adaye's victim, who cannot be named for legal reasons, contracted the virus after sleeping with Adaye between May 2002 and May 2003. John McDermott QC, for the prosecution, said the woman, a married professional, was devastated by her medical condition. He added: "For her, it is like a terrible nightmare." Judge Lynch said the victim's prognosis was bleak and the psychological damage immense.

Adaye also pleaded guilty to bigamy. The court heard how, in January 2003, he married a 57-year-old Liverpool woman while still married to a South African. Adaye saw the recently widowed woman as a "soft touch", and the court heard how, during this illegal marriage, Adaye continued to have other sexual partners, including a 17-year-old girl.

When one of his partners discovered she was HIV positive, she informed Adaye and said there was a good chance he was too. But he went on to have unprotected sexual intercourse with his victim and with the 17-year-old girl, who did not contract the disease.

Judge Lynch said there was no evidence that Adaye was infected with the HIV virus by his South African wife or that she had any knowledge of his HIV condition.

Adaye, from Toxteth, also admitted 20 counts of deception. He used a false passport, a false driving licence, and set himself up a false national insurance number to claim benefits worth more than £12,000.

Detective Constable Alan Coulthard, who investigated the case for Merseyside Police, described Adaye as a "ruthless predator". Judge Lynch said he would recommend Adaye be deported once he had served his sentence.