Gay gang infected victims with Aids virus at sex orgies
THE HAGUE - PROSECUTORS sought 8- to 15-year jail terms on Wednesday for three people accused of being part of a gay gang whose alleged victims told a Dutch court about attempts to infect them with the Aids virus at sex orgies.
'I feel fear, anger, sadness and anxiety,' one of the trio's alleged victims, an HIV-positive student, told the district court in Groningen on the third day of a week-long trial.
Hans Jurgens, 39, Peter Mulder, 50, and Wim Dekker, 49, all HIV-positive, are charged with drugging gay men, raping them, and injecting them with HIV-contaminated blood.
They stand accused of intentionally spreading the deadly virus at sex parties to which they invited people via the Internet, and are charged with aggravated assault, rape, and illegal possession of drugs.
Another witness, identified only as Erwin, questioned the motives for intentionally infecting a person with the immunodeficiency virus.
'One must have incredible hatred,' he said in a statement read out to the court by the presiding judge. Erwin has been taking anti-retroviral medication for six months.
'This question occupies my days and nights. For the rest of my life I will carry this crime with me, and its consequences.'
A third victim told the court he had unwittingly passed the virus to his partner, not knowing that he, himself, had been infected. He has not told his children of his illness, which he said filled him with 'an all-consuming anger'.
'I cannot understand why they did this to me. These men not only made me ill, but cause me to carry around a burdensome secret.'
Prosecutor Marcel Wolters told the court the case had sent shockwaves through the country. 'The combination of sex parties and HIV injections justifiably caused a big commotion.'
The trio were arrested in May last year after 14 alleged victims - 12 of whom are HIV-positive or sick with Aids - pressed charges. The prosecution believes they probably contracted the virus at the sex parties.
The victims were allegedly sedated with a combination of ecstasy, alcohol and the date rape drug GHB (gamma-Hydroxybutyric acid), before being raped or injected with HIV-positive blood.
The combination of drugs leaves a victim helpless and often with no memory of what happened.
Outlining the role of each of the three, Mr Wolters told the court that Mulder, a nurse, had been the one mainly responsible for drugging victims' drinks, administering the HIV injections, and had 'multiple sexual contacts' with party guests.
Jurgens, said the prosecutor, was the one whose blood Mulder drew and injected into others, and also had sex with many of the men.
Wolters said investigators had found a letter signed by Jurgens, addressed to Mulder, in which he talked about deliberately infecting people with HIV.
'I drugged guests and later gave them an injection with my own seropositive blood,' reads the letter produced by the prosecutor.
Jurgens' letter said he had had more 'randy and dirty' sex since his HIV infection than ever before.
The prosecution sought 15-year jail terms for Jurgens and Mulder.
For Dekker, the prosecutor asked for eight years.
'He (Dekker) often initiated contact via chatboy.nl and gaychat.nl (two online sites). He fetched and brought the visitors to parties, and made his home available for this purpose.' If the three defendants are convicted, the victims plan to launch civil action for compensation, their lawyer has told AFP. -- AFP
[And all the prosecutors are asking for is 15 years? What these 3 did is horrendous and despicable. If it is not murder, it is at least causing grevious hurt. And that the 3 of them planned and executed the crime points to conspiracy (common intent in Singapore law). Injecting the victims with infected blood is clearly vicious and malicious. And all the prosecutors are going for is 15 years? Incredible.]