{December 16, 2008}   HIV-infected stripper faces deportation

Woman convicted in 2007 after infecting husband

OTTAWA – An HIV-infected stripper who infected her husband faces possible deportation from Canada after being convicted of criminal negligence and aggravated assault for knowingly passing on the virus that causes AIDS.

 In a ruling released Tuesday, the Federal Court dismissed a challenge from Suwalee Iamkhong, who came to Canada from Hong Kong on a work visa in 1995 to work as an exotic dancer in Toronto.

Originally from Thailand, Iamkhong met Canadian Percy Whiteman soon after arriving in Canada and she married him in 1997. She had already tested positive for HIV in Hong Kong, but she not reveal her status to her husband until she fell ill and was hospitalized in 2004. Iamkhong, 39, was sentenced in August 2007 to three years in prison after being convicted of criminal negligence causing bodily harm and aggravated assault. Federal Court Justice Russel Zinn ruled against Iamkhong in her challenge to a report, prepared by Immigration officials, finding her inadmissable to Canada on grounds of having a criminal record that garnered a sentence of more than two years. A report, by law, must be prepared for the federal immigration minister before he makes a decision on whether to deport.Zinn noted that non-citizens may be removed from Canada if they have been convicted of “serious criminality, as the applicant has.”At her trial in January 2007, Iamkhong failed to convince the court that she did not believe she had HIV, despite the positive test result in Hong Kong. She argued that she mistakenly thought she had been tested in Canada for immigration purposes and found to be HIV-negative.



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