British hairdresser who deliberately infected men with HIV admits further attacks

Daryll Rowe admitted having sex with four men in the knowledge that he was HIV positive

British hairdresser who deliberately infected men with HIV admits further attacks

Daryll Rowe arrives at Lewes Crown Court in October 2017 | Image: Gareth Fuller/PA Archive/PA Images

A British hairdresser, who was jailed for deliberately infecting men with HIV, has admitted further attacks.

Daryll Rowe was handed a life sentence last month, with a minimum 12-year prison term, after he became the first person in the country to be convicted of intentionally setting out to spread the virus.

Brighton Crown Court heard the 27-year-old would tell his victims - who he met on the gay dating app Grindr - that he was free of HIV, and then attempt to use tampered condoms during sex in a bid to infect them.

At Edinburgh's High Court on Friday, Rowe admitted having sex with four men in the knowledge that he was HIV positive.

He was sentenced to a further eight years in prison.

Last month Rowe, from Edinburgh, was convicted of targeting 10 victims in England, - of which five are now HIV-positive.

He was found guilty of of five counts of grievous bodily harm with intent, and another five of attempting to do so.

"Daryll has destroyed my life"

One victim told the court that his encounters with Rowe - who would goad the men with abusive text messages after meeting them - had left him contemplating taking his own life.

"I think about committing suicide all the time," said the man, who is now HIV-positive.

"I don't feel I can trust anyone. Daryll has destroyed my life. I would rather he had murdered me than left me to live my life like this."

Another victim, who also tested positive for HIV, said: "How did this happen? My parents died of AIDS and I did everything to prevent contracting HIV. I tried to take my life with my HIV medication."

Rowe had sex with eight different men in Brighton before being arrested by Sussex Police, after two HIV patients at a sexual health clinic provided similar descriptions of the person they had sex with.

It led the force and health officials there to publish a warning urging gay men who had sex with "a man in his 20s with a Scottish accent" to get tested.

Rowe - said to have been motivated by "anger" and a need to "control" - was subsequently arrested again but was re-bailed twice until November, during which time he went on the run and targeted another two men.

Anyone affected by issues raised in this article can call The Samaritans on 116-123, text 087-2-60-90-90 or email jo@samaritans.ie - or contact the HSE HIV Helpline on 1800-459-459