portland independent media center  
images audio video
newswire article reporting global

gender & sexuality | labor | police / legal

Unsafe sex fine is a legal first (YAY!!!!!!!!)

A Christchurch man who put a prostitute's life at risk by deliberately taking off his condom has become the first in New Zealand to be prosecuted under a new unsafe-sex law.
Daniel James Morgan, 48, said he knew the prostitute would not have consented to him taking the condom off so he did it without her knowledge.

Christchurch District Court Judge John Bisphan fined Morgan $400 and ordered him to pay $130 costs. Morgan had pleaded guilty to the charge, which became law as part of the 2003 Prostitution Reform Act.

Outside court, the prostitute involved applauded the first conviction in New Zealand under the Act but said she will still have to wait another six weeks before knowing if the incident had given her HIV.

"It feels like a death sentence. I still don't know whether it will be one or not," she said.

"I've gone through a lot of gruelling tests. I've got children and I've looked after myself for so many years, practising safe sex for most of my life. How dare he take that away from me."

Anna Reed, regional co-ordinator for the New Zealand Prostitutes Collective, said previously most sex workers "wouldn't have been brave enough" to make a complaint with the police. However, the prosecution, conviction, and fine yesterday would act as a wake-up call.

AdvertisementAdvertisement"There's always been the odd person who thought they could get away with this (unsafe sex) but we hope this sends a good strong message out there," she said.

Detective Rachel Jefferies said it was thought the charge was the first to be brought under the Act.

From  http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,3343362a11,00.html

homepage: homepage: http://libertarias.ebloogy.com

hail NZ! 13.Jul.2005 02:29

.

I think that's great. Glad to see some government out there takes care of ALL workers, period, without pretending that a moral judgement on addressing the whole issue is taboo simply because the whole issue relegates sex workers who would be forced to experience more risk if the issue falls through the cracks. Fascinating political dynamic. Thanks for the post. hail NZ!