Guatemala

Last updated on: 7 July 2012

Criminalisation of HIV transmission/exposure

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

CRIMINAL CODE OF GUATEMALA - Decree 17-73 of July 5, 1973 (Unofficial translation)

Book II - Special Part - Title VII - Chapter IV - Spread of Disease

Article 301 - Spread of Disease

Article 305 - Contravention of Sanitary Measures

Article 312 - Guilty Conducts

Key wording in the law: 

CRIMINAL CODE OF GUATEMALA - Decree 17-73 of July 5, 1973 (Unofficial translation)

Book II - Special Part - Title VII - Chapter IV - Spread of Disease

Article 301 - Spread of Disease

Anyone who intentionally spreads a disease, dangerous or contagious for others, shall be punished with imprisonment of one to six years.

Article 305 - Contravention of Sanitary Measures

Anyone who violates the measures imposed by law or those taken by health authorities to prevent the introduction or spread of an epidemic, a plague of a plant or animal disease that could affect human beings, shall be punished with imprisonment of six months two years

Article 312 - Guilty Conducts

If the acts contained in Articles 301, 302, 303 and 304, have been culpably committed, the offender shall be punished with the punishment appropriate to the crime, reduced by two thirds

Original Spanish Version

CÓDIGO PENAL DE GUATEMALA - Decreto 17-73 de 5 de julio de 1973.

Libro II - Parte Especial - Título VII - Capítulo IV - Propagación de Enfermedad

Artículo 301 - Propagación de Enfermedad

Quien, de propósito, propagare una enfermedad peligrosa o contagiosa para las personas, será sancionado con prisión de uno a seis años.

Artículo 305 - Contravención de Medidas Sanitarias

Quien, infrinja las medidas impuestas por la ley o las adoptadas por las autoridades sanitarias para impedir la introducción o propagación de una epidemia, de una plaga vegetal o de una epizootia susceptible de afectar a los seres humanos, será sancionada con prisión de seis meses a dos años.

Artículo 312 - Delitos Culposos

Si los hechos comprendidos en los artículos 301, 302, 303 y 304, se hubiesen cometido culposamente, el responsable será sancionado con la pena que al delito corresponda, rebajada en dos terceras partes.

Discussion: 

This Criminal Code penalize the intentional and recklessly transmission of any dangerous or contagious illness. This enunciates includes HIV transmission.

Guatemala penal law too sanctions the infraction of sanitary measures taken by the health authority in order to prevent the introduction or spread of any epidemic.

Is not clear if the exposure to HIV or other contagious or danger illness is penalizes by this law. The article 40 of HIV Specific Law, mentioned that the information to sexual partners is a right, not an obligation, of the person living with HIV.

Survey respondents/Organisations working on HIV and the Law: 

Number of people living with HIV: UNAIDS/WHO



Acknowledgement: We are grateful to Edgar Carrasco (ex-Director ACCSI-Human Rights Organization, Caracas-Venezuela) who provided the most of the laws that could be potentially used.

Asociación Gente Positiva

PASCA - Iniciativa de Políticas en Salud - HPI

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 living with HIV and AIDS. Neither a medical certificate nor an HIV test result is required when entering the country. Foreigners with a known HIV infection are not subject to specific residence regulations. There are no regulations regarding the control, deportation or expulsion of those concerned.

For updated information, please go to: http://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

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