Last updated on: 23 April 2015

Criminalisation of HIV transmission/exposure

Whether Specific law enacted: 
No specific'criminal' law.but see Public Health Decree 39A,(2012)
Number of people prosecuted: 
Number of people convicted: 
Applicable law: 

No specific'criminal' law.but Public Health Decree 39A,(2012)  a 2012 measure that allows police to detain people suspected of being HIV positive and force them to be tested, is being used to against alleged sex workers. This has led to quarantine, arrest, and deportation of  "illegal' migrants.

Key Cases: 

 UPDATE: APRIL 2, 2015 Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras announced the repeal of the health regulation that was used to justify these roundups. 

The story can be seen at

Since the end of April 2012, sex workers in Greece are forced to be tested by the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (KEEL).

According to Kathimerini news, the police have uploaded photos of 12 sex workers onto their website<>. Those who are tested HIV positive are to face a prosecutor on charges of intentionally causing grievous bodily harm, a felony. Source:

In March 2010 a Thessaloniki court found a 42-year-old man guilty of "bodily injury through serial negligence" and "violation of measures imposed by the authority responsible for the spread of disease from deliberate negligence" because he unknowingly donated HIV-positive blood that ultimately resulted in the infection of several blood recipients. The court stated that the man – who was undiagnosed at the time – was culpable because he had not disclosed that he had previously had sex with a sex worker. He was sentenced to 33 months’ imprisonment, suspended for three years.

Source: Athens News Agency Thessaloniki: sentencing 42 year-old donor infected a one year-old girl with the AIDS virus. 9 March, 2010

HIV/AIDS at Work: I.B. v Greece - See more at: 

Scientists and human rights campaigners condemn the reinstatement of Provision 39A allowing forced HIV testing of suspected sex workers, drug users and undocumented migrants - See more at:

Survey respondents/Organisations working on HIV and the Law: 

Positive Voice, the assocation of PLHIV in Greece.

Other laws and policies with an impact on responses to HIV

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

There are no specific entry or residence regulations for people with HIV/AIDS. No HIV test result is required when entering the country and there are no controls at the border. A known HIV infection will not lead to deportation or the termination of a person's stay.

Foreigners intending to work in Greece are required to perform a health test, including tuberculosis and hepatitis B, but not HIV. Only sex workers are tested for sexually transmittable infections. The tests are mandatory. People with a positive test result are not allowed to work in this area of expertise. They are treated for free.

Antiretroviral medication can be carried, accompanied by a doctor’s certificate. Important: HIV medication is not sold in Greece, but distributed via HIV clinics in hospitals only. Foreigners who are not residents cannot access these drugs.

The Migration Law allows HIV-positive individuals to extend an expiring visa for humanitarian reasons.

For updated information, please go to:

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:  Different for heterosexuals and homosexuals

Marriage and Substitutes for Marriage: No law

For updated information, please go to: