Barcelona 2013
Barcelona 2013
Abstract book - Abstract - 119
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Conference Details
International Committee
Plenary Speakers
Presenting Speakers
Scientific Committee
Abstract #119  -  Law and Ethics
  26.5: Law and Ethics (Parallel) on Tuesday @ 11.00-13.00 in Auditorio Chaired by David Dalmau,
Vincent Douris

  Presenting Author:   Prof Maria Jose Fuster Ruiz de Apodaca - SEISIDA, Spain
  Additional Authors:  Ms. Chen Zhang, Dr. Yan Hong, Ms. Shaobing Su , Dr. Yuejiao Zhou,  
To analyze the language of the sentences existing in Spain judging the eventual sexual transmission of HIV from a psychosocial perspective.
Method / Issue:
All sentences and court rulings dictated by the Spanish penal and civil jurisdictions between 1981 - 2012 obtained through a systematic search of the legal databases Cendoj, Aranzadi, El Derecho, and Tirant Lo Blanch. The sentences/ court rulings selected contained the following inclusion criteria; (1) the possible transmission of HIV is judged as an individual infraction, whether or not there are other infractions involved (2) HIV is employed as a means to increase the sentence imposed due to other infractions. Content analysis was conducted of the sections of sentences in which non juridical elements of discourse existed. The categorization was done through the approach of the psychosocial theory that studies stigma in general and that associated to HIV in particular.
Results / Comments:
The sentences reveal a low level of knowledge concerning HIV. With the exception of one sentence, the current scientific knowledge on the evolution of the infection and its transmissibility is not reflected or applied in the juridical argumentation. There is a lack of data that would allow to determine the psychological variables that might have influenced the person with HIV to hide their serology. Frequent elements that interact with the stigma associated to the infection by HIV were found. Amongst them: (a) strengthening of the perception of the gravity of the infection: this is the characteristic that that enables the framing of the transmission of HIV into the bodily harm crime, (b) perception of the transmissibility of HIV: in general, the probability of the transmission is considered high, since that is a requirement to appreciate the existence of dolus eventualis. Probability is argued based on the reiteration of the sexual act and not on the use of a condom. Aspects such as the specific sexual conduct or the antiretroviral treatment appear only in a few sentences. Furthermore, other linguistic elements related to exclusion and prejudice were found.
Positive elements exist in our legislation, such as the consideration of the use of the condom or the revelation of the infection as elements to exclude the existence of the crime. Nonetheless, it is necessary to train juridical agents in epidemiological, clinical and social aspects of the HIV infection.
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