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Diasporian News of Wednesday, 5 February 2003

Source: Ghanaian Chronicle

AIDS-spreading Ghanaian busted in Finland

Helsinki (Finland) - A Ghanaian, and a former member of the famous “Afro Nokoko” band based in Finland, George "Kings" Mensah, has been arrested in the Finnish capital, Helsinki, for rape and deliberately infecting Finish women with the Human Immuno-deficiency Virus (HIV).
He was also suspected to have infected some ladies with the virus around Osu and La, both suburbs of Accra, Ghana. The Rastafarian and musician, who hails from either Osu or La area, was diagnosed as having HIV in 1995 in Finland and was counselled not to have unprotected sex.
He had been in police custody since December last year after he was suspected to have raped 12 ladies. Charges would also be laid against him for knowingly infecting people with the HIV, probably around March this year in Helsinki.
According to The Ghanaian Chronicle sources, a victim reported to the Helsinki police that Kings had raped her. After the incident had been published by Merja Mahka, in early December by the Iltalehti, a Finland-based newspaper, 40 Finish women contacted the police, saying that they had sexual encounters with Kings. It is believed in Helsinki that, this figure might only be a tip of the iceberg.
George Kings did not tell anyone about his HIV status and hid it even from his closest friends and band mates. Kings’ band mates felt they had betrayed the Finish women by looking on while George misbehaved. “We spend a lot of time together, but he never said a word about his HIV status,” one of his mates said.
The source continued that, Kings was extremely popular among Finnish women. His charm seemed to work on women like a hot blade on butter. “There certainly was no shortage,” the source added.
According to one of the rape victims, Kings approach his victims, especially young women, nicely and latter befriended them. He would then invite them to his residence for a drink, which would finally weaken them to the extent that they would be unable to move a muscle or make noise because he puts drugs into the drinks. It is at this stage that Kings gets his victims. “George drugged and brutally raped me,” the victim added.
Kings has denied all the allegations saying that the women were lying. He admitted having sex with them, but insists that it was protected and that he did not make the women take drugs.
“I have been very careful to always use protection,” Kings told the court at his first trial where the court decided that the police should still kept him in custody at Vantaa, which is at the outskirts of Helsinki. He is likely to be convicted for about eight years in imprisonment for the offences.
In the country, the Chronicle inquiries at the Osu-La areas have revealed that George had infected some ladies with the virus. According to one lady, who spoke on anonymity, she had an affair with George when he was in the country last two years and that she is going for an HIV test to ascertain whether she has the virus or not. The last time he came to the country, a Danish woman accompanied him, the paper gathered.
In a related development, the Chief State Attorney, Eric Adbolosu, said that there is no specific law to sentence people like Kings, who intentionally infect other people with the virus. He noted that Article 14 (I) (d) of the 1992 Constitution, which states that, “every person shall be entitled to his personal liberty and no person shall be deprived of his personal liberty except in the case of a person suffering from an infectious or contagious disease, a person of unsound mind, a person addicted to drugs or alcohol or a vagrant, for the purpose of his care or treatment or the protection of the community,” could be used only to restrict people who have the virus but not to prosecute and jail them. He called on the relevant authorities to make the necessary changes to the law to cater for that.