German pop singer pleads guilty to unprotected HIV sex charge
Darmstadt (Germany), Aug 16, German pop star Nadja Benaissa Monday pleaded guilty to causing dangerous bodily harm by having unprotected sex despite knowing she was HIV- positive.
“But I am truly sorry,” Benaissa testified on the opening day of her trial, admitting that she had not informed her partners of her HIV-positive status.
Benaissa’s trial opened in the city of Darmstadt.
The 28-year-old singer, of the pop group No Angels, is charged with one count of dangerous bodily harm and four counts of attempted dangerous bodily harm, dating from between 2000 and 2004, and faces up to 10 years in jail if found guilty.
Benaissa shot to stardom in 2000, after No Angels won the talent show Popstars. The all-female band went on to sell more than five million records.
Benaissa was arrested in April 2009, as she was about to go onstage in a Frankfurt nightclub, and spent 10 days in custody.
A man, not named for legal reasons, who has been confirmed as being HIV-positive, is a co-claimant, alleging that it was Benaissa who infected him.
The singer, who has an 11-year-old daughter, has not yet developed the symptoms of AIDS, the immune-system disease that can result from HIV infection.