For the first time in the UK, a man has been found guilty of intentionally infecting others with HIV. Daryll Rowe, 27, was sentenced Wednesday to life behind bars with a minimum term of 12 years for infecting five men via unprotected sex and trying to infect five others by damaging condoms, the BBC reports. Rowe was diagnosed with the virus in April 2015, and then embarked upon what the judge called a "determined hateful campaign of sly violence," meeting men on gay dating app Grindr for sex. After they slept together, he would send them messages like "I have HIV LOL. Oops."
After having sex with eight men between October 2015 and February 2016, Rowe went on the run from police and had sex with two more men. He lied, telling the men he did not have the virus, but pressured them for unprotected sex or tampered with condoms if they refused, the Guardian reports. "Many of those men were young men in their 20s at the time they had the misfortune to meet you," the judge said. "They describe living with a life sentence as a result of your cruel and senseless acts. ... I cannot see how and when you will no longer be a danger to gay men." Some of Rowe's victims testified to having considered suicide after finding out they had been infected; one said he would have rather Rowe "murdered" him.