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Navy Chaplain With HIV Gets Jail in Forcible Sodomy Case

Didn't disclose illness before sex with officer
By Zach Samalin,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 6, 2007 2:43 PM CST
Navy Chaplain With HIV Gets Jail in Forcible Sodomy Case
Lt. Cmdr. John Thomas Matthew Lee faces charges of aggravated assault, indecent assault, fraternization and conduct unbecoming a military officer.   (

(Newser) – An HIV-positive US Navy chaplain pleaded guilty today to several charges of forcible sodomy and an aggravated assault charge for not disclosing his HIV status to one man, the AP reports. Lt. Cmdr. John Thomas Matthew Lee, 42, was sentenced to two years; without the plea bargain, the charges could have carried a life sentence.

Lee, a Catholic priest, admitted to forcing himself on a midshipman in 2004, while Lee was assigned to the US Naval Academy.  He learned of his HIV status in 2005, but lied about it after having sex with a male Air Force officer in 2006. "He's extremely remorseful about his conduct, both as a chaplain and as an officer," Lee's attorney said. (Read more Navy stories.)

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