translation agency

Dallas Morning News
Collin jury gets case of 'ladies' man' who didn't tell partners
Diane Jennings, djennings@dallasnews.com
May 27, 2009
The case of Philippe Padieu, a martial arts instructor charged with having unprotected sex with women without telling them he was HIV positive, has gone to a Collin County jury.

During closing arguments in the criminal trial - which has attracted national attention - prosecutors portrayed Padieu as a predator.

Defense attorneys said the 53-year-old Frisco resident was a popular ladies' man being prosecuted for his lifestyle.

Padieu is charged with six counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon - his infected bodily fluids.

Assistant District Attorney Curtis Howard told jurors Padieu gave the impression of being a "catch" for middle-aged women.

"He's a predator," Howard said, "and his personality is his camouflage ...You've got a guy who's got all his hair. He doesn't have a big belly. He's in shape. He drives a nice car, a Corvette. He's French. He treats women well."

But, the prosecutor said, Padieu broke the law by knowingly, recklessly and intentionally having sex with multiple women, exposing them to HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, without telling them.

Defense attorneys countered that Padieu was simply being prosecuted for his colorful lifestyle.

Bennie House, one of Padieu's lawyers, said his client's partners had a responsibility to practice safe sex.

"They should have invoked a mantra - no glove, no love," House said. "If that didn't happen, they should walk out."

George A. Giles, another defense attorney, said that what Padieu did does not constitute aggravated assault. He suggested that prosecutors go to Austin to lobby for changes in the law if they want to use the criminal code to address the practice of unsafe sex by someone with HIV.

"When does he have to tell them or anybody he's got a disease?" he said.

Giles raised the possibility that people could be prosecuted for infecting others with swine flu if they didn't wear a mask or wipe down a water fountain after using it.

If convicted, Padieu could be sentenced to five to 99 years in prison on each of the six counts.

www.aegis.org