Sussex Police

Daryll Rowe has been described as a “danger to gay men” by Judge Christine Henson, who has jailed him for life with a minimum term of 12 years.

The 27-year-old hairdresser knowingly tried to infect 10 men with HIV after meeting them on hook-up app Grindr.

He first of all insisted on unprotected sex with the men, telling them that he was free of the virus.

The court heard that if the men insisted on using a condom, Rowe tampered with them.

His victims told a court that after he had met up with them, he’d send them a text telling them that he was actually HIV-positive.

“Maybe you have the fever. I came inside you and I have HIV LOL. Oops!” read a message one of the victims received.

Five men he had unprotected sex with acquired the HIV virus, while Rowe sabotaged the condoms of another five.

“The messages you sent make it crystal clear you knew exactly what you were doing,” Judge Christine Henson QC said, while sentencing him.

“As well as the physical offences it is clear for the victims the psychological effects are immense.

“I cannot see how and when you will no longer be a danger to gay men.”

She added: “I note that this sentence is not about stigmatising anyone living with HIV.”

Rowe was convicted of five counts of GBH and five counts of attempted GBH.

Prosecutor Caroline Carberry QC read out statements from nine of Rowe’s 10 victims ahead of the sentencing.

Many revealed that they had contemplated suicide after suffering both physical and psychological damage.

“Darryl has destroyed my life,” one said. “I would rather he had murdered me than left me to live my life like this.”