Daniel Shaw, a 43-year-old resident of Town Street, Armley, has been handed a three-year and four-month prison sentence by Leeds Crown Court. The ruling comes as a result of an investigation conducted by safeguarding officers, following Shaw’s reckless transmission of HIV to a woman.

Shaw pleaded guilty to Section 20 grievous bodily harm during a hearing on April 18. It was revealed that he engaged in unprotected sexual intercourse with the victim without disclosing his HIV-positive status. Additionally, Shaw neglected to adhere to his prescribed medication regime.

The victim, after conducting an online search, stumbled upon a news article from October 2020 that detailed Shaw’s previous criminal activities. He had received an 18-month prison term for offences including the disclosure of private sexual images with the intent to cause distress, two counts of harassment, and breaching a restraining order, all involving two former partners. The article also mentioned his HIV status.

Soon after the discovery, the victim fell ill and was subsequently diagnosed with the condition. When she confronted Shaw about his HIV status, he denied it and claimed that she had prior knowledge of his condition.

In August 2021, the victim reported the incident to the police, leading to an investigation by the Leeds District Safeguarding Unit. Despite Shaw’s repeated denials during multiple interviews, compelling evidence was uncovered, contradicting his claims. Medical records revealed a pattern of missed appointments and failure to collect necessary medication, increasing the risk of transmitting the virus to sexual partners.

Throughout the investigation, the victim received support from the dedicated officer handling the case, as well as the Leeds Domestic Violence Service. They provided guidance on accessing broader support for her physical and psychological well-being.

The investigation team worked closely with complex case specialists at the Crown Prosecution Service to compile a robust evidential package. Shaw maintained his innocence from the initial report in August 2021 until his plea hearing in April, causing further distress to the victim.

Detective Chief Inspector Sarah Lambert, head of Leeds District Safeguarding, commended the victim for her bravery in coming forward to report such an offence. She described the victim as devastated by Shaw’s actions, which will continue to profoundly impact her life. Lambert expressed hope that Shaw’s criminal accountability will provide the victim with some measure of reassurance as she strives to move forward.

Lambert also acknowledged the complexities of the case and the challenges faced during the investigation. She emphasised the police’s unwavering commitment to securing justice for victims and hopes that this case will serve as a testament to that dedication.

The sentencing of Daniel Shaw serves as a stark reminder of the importance of responsible behaviour in matters involving sexual health and consent. The consequences of failing to disclose HIV status and neglecting proper medication can be severe, not only for the individuals directly affected but also for the overall well-being of our community.