Thai police hunting Czech man accused of spreading HIV

By Andrew V. Pestano  |  Jan. 17, 2017 at 9:01 AM
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BANGKOK, Jan. 17 (UPI) -- Police in Thailand announced they've launched a manhunt for Czech national Zdenek Pfeifer, who is accused of knowingly infecting people with HIV.

Pfeifer is wanted in the Czech Republic on charges of battery, spreading an infectious disease, sexual abuse and distribution of pornography after he allegedly had unprotected sex with at least 17 male and female victims, all while knowing he was HIV positive.

Thailand's Provincial Police Region 5, which oversees operations in eight northern provinces, on Tuesday said it began hunting for Pfeifer.

Interpol said one of the victims was a minor and that Pfeifer filmed the acts to create child pornography. Pfeifer faces a maximum 12-year prison sentence if convicted. Police said he has flown to several tourist destinations in Thailand.

Interpol had sent a Red Notice to Thai police, warning them that Pfeifer, who has been in Thailand for at least two years, remains in the country as there is no record of him leaving.

Red notices are not international arrest warrants but a way for Interpol to inform member nations that an arrest warrant has been issued by a judicial authority that seeks the location and arrest of wanted persons for the purpose of extradition or similar lawful action.

"Interpol warned us to be on the lookout. They are afraid he might be seeking victims in Thailand," Pongdetch Prommichit, deputy commander of Thailand's northern police force, told Khaosod English.

Pfeifer learned he was HIV positive in 2013 and he was instructed to prevent spreading the disease to others.

"Nevertheless, between half of the year 2013 and half of the year 2015 in ten cases he had unprotected sexual intercourse with many men and he did not inform his sexual partners that he suffered from AIDS," Interpol said. "At least in one case he infected his sexual partner."

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