Love and Lies

Love and Lies

We try to focus on local laws, narrowing down from Federal, to State, to City Ordinances.  But as you've seen, the occasional international crime / law catches our eye.

This week we spotted another crime occurring in the Middle East.  No, we're not talking about the latest blockade, suicide bombers, or military assault.  We're talking about someone lying to get you into bed. (Haaretz & Above the Law)  In the case, an Arab man pretended to be a Jewish man interested in a long term relationship.  When the woman found out he was actually Arab, she filed rape charges.

Now, to my knowledge, she didn't make any claim that the sex was not consensual, she claimed rape by deceit.  Not only did the police take this charge seriously, charges were pressed and the man was convicted.  Although I do notice that she didn't call him on his claim that he wanted a long-term relationship.  What kind of precedents does this set?   What's next, "he lied about the size of his bank account"?  I understand that there are some ethnic hostilities in the region.  Also (based on my limited knowledge) the Middle East is to America as America is to Europe in regards to prudishness.  But still!

Although things like this do happen in America.  Although I think you would be hard pressed to use ethnic deceit as a claim.  Under Minn. Stat. 609.2241 subd. 2 - If you have sex with someone, and you have an "infectious agent" that can cause a "communicable disease" you can be charged with with anything from Murder in the First Degree - all the way down to Attempted Assault in the Fifth Degree.

Now there is a general definition for "Communicable disease" - a disease or condition that causes serious illness, serious disability, or death; the infectious agent of which may pass or be carried from the body of one person to the body of another through direct transmission.  - But what does that mean, are we talking about having the flu and not mentioning it to your partner?  Or only for those really bad diseases... that we won't bother to list or reference, cuz everyone knows they're really really bad.

Although the statute is not clear, an argument can be made that legislators intended this statute to pertain to some of the more sever STDs. But this brings up questions of the scientific reliability of these tests, and the privacy of an individual’s medical records. Beyond that, the White House has expressed a concern about the prosecution of those with HIV in these cases. (p. 26)
So, while I don’t think American’s will be facing prosecution for lying about their ethnic background. It may be a good idea to tell your spouse you picked up the flu before bed time.

Please remember that the interpretation and analysis presented here is not intended to be legal advice.  If you are seeking legal advice please contact us for a free consultation and actual examination the issues that your case may present.

Landon J. Ascheman, Esq.
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