Hairdresser jailed for trying to infect men with HIV loses legal challenge

A man found guilty of deliberately trying to infect 10 men with HIV has lost challenges against his conviction and sentence.

Hairdresser Daryll Rowe watched proceedings via video link from prison as leading judges rejected his appeal applications on Thursday.

Lady Justice Hallett, sitting with two other judges at the Court of Appeal in London, announced that the grounds presented on his behalf in relation to both conviction and sentence were “unarguable”.

Rowe, now 28, was sentenced to life with a minimum term of 12 years by a judge at Brighton Crown Court in April.

Daryll Rowe
Daryll Rowe

He became the first man in the country to be found guilty of intentionally setting out to spread the virus.

Felicity Gerry QC had argued on Rowe’s behalf during the appeal proceedings that a submission of “no case to answer” should have been accepted by the trial judge.

She said: “Our primary submissions are that the submission of no case to answer should have succeeded.

“That not having succeeded, the summing up was inadequate.”

But the prosecution argued that there was “no merit” in the “bold” submissions made on Rowe’s behalf.

Rowe was convicted of 10 charges – five of causing grievous bodily harm with intent and five of attempting to do so.

His victims cannot be identified for legal reasons and Lady Justice Hallett emphasised that nothing must be published which could lead to their identification.

At his trial, Rowe was accused of launching a deliberate campaign to infect gay men he met on a dating app after being diagnosed in April 2015 in his home city of Edinburgh.

He had sex with eight of them in Brighton, East Sussex, between October that year and February 2016, and later with two others in the North East.

Rowe told jurors he believed he had been cured of the virus by the time he moved to Brighton, having adopted the practice of drinking his own urine as a treatment, supplemented with natural remedies, including oregano, coconut and olive leaf oils.