Bulgaria

Last updated on: 6 July 2012

Criminalisation of HIV transmission/exposure

Bulgaria
Whether Specific law enacted: 
-
Number of people prosecuted: 
-
Number of people convicted: 
-
Applicable law: 

Article 135 of the Bulgarian Penal Code is a special article regarding deliberate infection with venereal diseases.

Key wording in the law: 

English Language translation:

Article 135

(1)     (Amend., SG 10/93; SG 62/97)     Who, knowing that he suffers from a venereal disease, infects somebody else with the same disease shall be punished by imprisonment of up to three years and a fine up to two hundred levs.

(2)     (Amend., SG 10/93; SG 62/97)     If in the case under the preceding para the infected are minor persons under 16 years of age or more than two persons have been infected the punishment shall be imprisonment of up to five years or a fine of up to five hundred levs.

(3)     (Amend., SG 10/93; SG 62/97)     Who, knowing that he suffers from venereal disease, infects by negligence somebody else with the same disease shall be punished by imprisonment of up to one year or a fine of up to two hundred levs.

(4)     (Amend., SG 10/93; SG 62/97)     Who, through a sexual intercourse or in any other way puts another person in jeopardy of being infected with a venereal disease, shall be punished by imprisonment of up to six months of by a fine of up to two hundred levs.

(5)     (Suppl., SG 28/82; Amend., SG 10/93, SG 62/97)     A person having a venereal disease, who refuses to be treated or avoids a regular obligatory treatment shall be fined with up to three hundred levs imposed through administrative channels.

(6) If the act under the preceding para is repeated the punishment shall be imprisonment of up to six months.

Original Bulgarian Language version:

Чл. 135.

(1)     (Изм. - ДВ, бр. 10 от 1993 г., бр. 62 от 1997 г.)     Който, като знае, че страда от венерическа болест, зарази другиго със същата болест, се наказва с лишаване от свобода до три години и с глоба до двеста лева.

(2)     (Изм. - ДВ, бр. 10 от 1993 г., бр. 62 от 1997 г.)     Ако в случая на предходната алинея заразените са непълнолетни лица до 16-годишна възраст или са заразени повече от две лица, наказанието е лишаване от свобода до пет години или глоба до петстотин лева.

(3)     (Изм. - ДВ, бр. 10 от 1993 г., бр. 62 от 1997 г.)     Който, като знае, че страда от венерическа болест, зарази по непредпазливост другиго със същата болест, се наказва с лишаване от свобода до една година или с глоба до двеста лева.

(4)     (Изм. - ДВ, бр. 10 от 1993 г., бр. 62 от 1997 г.)     Който чрез полово сношение или по друг начин постави друго лице в опасност да бъде заразено от венерическа болест, се наказва с лишаване от свобода до шест месеца или с глоба до двеста лева.

(5)     (Доп. - ДВ, бр. 28 от 1982 г., изм., бр. 10 от 1993 г., бр. 62 от 1997 г.)     Лице, болно от венерическа болест, което откаже да се лекува или се отклонява от редовно задължително лекуване, се наказва с глоба до триста лева, налагана по административен ред.

(6)     Ако деянието по предходната алинея е извършено повторно, наказанието е лишаване от свобода до шест месеца.

Discussion: 

From the responses received, it appears that no one has been convicted of deliberately infecting another individual with HIV.

We are aware that UNAIDS has reported that there have been two previous lawsuits brought against the state by haemophiliacs who contracted HIV through blood transfusions.  However civil suits from transmission through infected blood products were viewed as beyond the scope of the survey which informed this web content.

Survey respondents/Organisations working on HIV and the Law: 

Survey respondents The Health and Social Development Foundation in Sofia, Bulgaria. Number of people living with HIV is offcial figure supplied as the 'Official Statistic' by The Health and Social Development Foundation in Sofia, Bulgaria. Organizations working on HIV and the Law Hope Against AIDS (HAAIDS) Foundation offer some support at their office in Sophia.

Further reading: 

The Health and Social Development Foundation in Sofia, Bulgaria has a extensive website available at: http://www.hesed.bg/ We are also aware that the Hope Against AIDS (HAAIDS) Foundation offers a Bulgarian language website offering support and information. 

Other laws and policies with an impact on responses to HIV

Laws and regulations relating to entry, stay or residence in the country: 

The Ministry of Health published its new “Ordinance on the requirements and procedure for HIV testing, test result notification and registering new HIV cases“, No 47, effective December 11, 2009. This ordinance replaces Regulation 4 from April 2 1992, and removes all HIV testing requirements for long term visitors or immigrants from the law. 

The new law stipulates mandatory HIV testing fort he following situations: blood donours, patients on haemodialysis, babies from HIV-positive mothers, babies from mothers not been tested for HIV during pregnancy and delivery, babies whose mothers have died from HIV-associated conditions, children approved for adoption if there is a risk of blood borne infections, children in social institutions before admission, people applying for adoption.

Antiretroviral medication can be imported for personal use. A certificate by the treating physician is required. 

For updated information, please go to: www.hivrestrictions.org

Laws relating to same sex, sexual relations: 

Male to Male relationships: Legal

Punishments for male to male relationships:  No law

Female to Female Relationships: Legal

Age of consent:  Equal for heterosexuals and homosexuals

Marriage and Substitutes for Marriage: No law

For updated information, please go to: http://ilga.org