Former Welsh rugby worldwide Gareth Thomas has denied allegations made within the Excessive Court docket that he contaminated a former companion with HIV, Mail Plus has revealed.
The ex-Wales and Lions rugby captain was accused of ‘concealing’ his HIV-positive situation and failing ‘to take reasonable care’ to make sure he didn’t transmit the virus to 59-year-old Ian Baum.
HIV carriers might be charged with grievous bodily hurt in the event that they fail to declare their standing to potential sexual companions and move on the an infection.
It comes three years after the rugby legend Gareth Thomas revealed he has been dwelling with HIV ‘for years’ – at instances leaving him considering suicide.
The Wales and British Lions star, who got here out as homosexual in 2009, stated he was revealing his analysis as a result of he wished to ‘make a distinction’ by serving to finish the stigma surrounding the virus.
He stated he had saved his HIV standing secret as a result of he feared folks would ‘deal with me like a leper’.
Thomas, 48, turned the primary main British sports activities star to confess to being HIV-positive in 2019.
He additionally stated he was threatened with blackmail – forcing him to inform his household about his HIV standing earlier than they heard it from another person.
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Rugby legend Gareth Thomas revealed he has been dwelling with HIV ‘for years’. He’s pictured in a video he posted on Twitter about his situation
Thomas performed 100 instances for Wales throughout his illustrious profession earlier than he retired from the sport in 2011
Gareth married his childhood sweetheart Jemma in 2002 however got here out as homosexual in 2009
Thomas (pictured centre) participating within the Wales Ironman competitors in Tenby. He’s pictured rising from the water after finishing the gruelling 2.3-mile swim
He stated in 2019: ‘I have been dwelling with this secret for years. I’ve felt disgrace and retaining such a giant secret has taken its toll.
WHAT IS HIV?
HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus) is a virus which assaults the immune system—the physique’s defence towards ailments.
HIV stays within the physique for all times, however therapy can hold the virus beneath management and the immune system wholesome. With out medicine folks with HIV can develop AIDS.
AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) is essentially the most superior stage of an HIV an infection, when the immune system can now not battle infections.
Somebody with AIDS has each HIV and not less than one among a selected listing of ‘AIDS-defining’ ailments, which embody tuberculosis, pneumonia and a few varieties of most cancers.
AIDS is life threatening, but when HIV is caught early and is handled, it won’t result in AIDS. If HIV is caught late, it could result in extra problems and will finally result in AIDS.
You will need to get examined early if in case you have been susceptible to HIV, as it would imply which you can entry therapy that may forestall you ever getting AIDS.
Supply: The Nationwide Aids Belief
‘I had a concern folks would choose me and deal with me like a leper due to a lack of expertise.
‘I used to be in a darkish place, feeling suicidal. I considered driving off a cliff. Many individuals dwell in concern and disgrace of getting HIV, however I refuse to be one among them now.
‘We have to break the stigma as soon as and for all. I am talking out as a result of I need to assist others and make a distinction.’
HIV (human immuno-deficency virus) assaults the physique’s immune system. These identified with the virus as soon as had a bleak prospect.
Nevertheless, these days it may be absolutely managed by medicine which cease it creating into AIDS.
The rugby star in contrast his situation to ‘dwelling with diabetes or hypertension’ and seems to be as match as ever.
He stated he would ‘always remember’ the second he discovered his analysis, which got here after a ‘routine sexual well being check’ in Cardiff.
When instructed in a ‘matter of truth means’ that he was HIV-positive, Thomas stated he broke down. ‘I instantly thought I used to be going to die,’ he stated.
‘I felt like an categorical practice was hitting me at 300mph. I wasn’t anticipating it in any respect. Then I used to be pondering, ‘How lengthy have I obtained left?’
Thomas didn’t say when the analysis happened or whether or not he turned contaminated whereas nonetheless enjoying skilled rugby, however revealed that he needed to inform quite a few former sexual companions as a matter of ‘responsibility’ so they might get themselves examined too.
He cut up together with his spouse Jemma in 2009 upon revealing his true sexuality, seven years after they married.
David Cameron meets with Gareth Thomas at Downing Avenue in 2011 following his retirement
The ex-rugby participant says he thought-about committing suicide after studying of his analysis
Thomas additionally stated that studying of his analysis has not been the final trauma he has needed to endure.
He revealed that afterwards he was ‘threatened by individuals who stated they’d give away my secret’, who he feared would ‘use it as a weapon’ towards him and his household.
He had wished to maintain the data from his mother and father, Yvonne and Barry, fearing it will ‘harm’ them. After the blackmail menace he determined he had no possibility however to inform them. Within the occasion he found he ‘underestimated’ them.
‘My mother and father and family members are positive with it,’ he stated.
Thomas, who’s affectionately identified by his nickname ‘Alfie’, stated there was a lot ‘inaccurate info’ about HIV that he wished to counter, stressing, as an illustration, that there was ‘no risk’ of him passing it on to others due to the medicine he was taking.
He stated: ‘I at all times say now, ‘I am dwelling with HIV. I do know I’ve HIV, however HIV would not have me. It would not management me.’
Commenting on Thomas going public, an in depth good friend who additionally performed for Wales, stated in 2019: ‘Everyone seems to be shocked and fearful for Gareth – however the vital factor is he is match and nicely.
‘He’s a exceptional particular person who’s mentally geared up to take care of this sickness.
‘Everybody supported him when he got here out as homosexual and that help shall be even stronger now.’
He added: ‘Gareth is inspirational, he is modified the lives of so many individuals.
‘I absolutely anticipate him to grow to be a number one gentle for HIV and Aids charities, that is the type of bloke he’s.’
Thomas got here out on the finish of his rugby profession and stated on the time: ‘I do not need to be often called a homosexual rugby participant, I’m a rugby participant firstly I am a person.’
Thomas took half in Dancing On Ice in 2013. He’s pictured proper with skating companion Robin Johnstone
After retiring from the sport Thomas launched a profitable media profession whereas volunteering for charities and is an lively supporter of Childline.
‘Come on Alfie!’: Gareth Thomas cheered by crowds at Wales Ironman day after HIV revelation
Gareth Thomas was given enormous cheers as he emerged out of the water after finishing the primary leg of the gruelling Ironman race in Tenby, West Wales.
There have been cries of ‘Come on Alfie’ and ‘Go Gareth’ as he mounted his black racing bike for a 112-mile race by way of Pembrokeshire’s nation roads.
Thomas waved on the crowds however appeared ruggedly decided and there was no smiles from the ex-rugby star the day after he revealed he’s battling HIV.
Spectator Adam Davies, 45, of Swansea, stated: ‘He was in sports activities mode – he appeared fairly decided and engrossed within the race. I solely discovered about his sickness once I arrived right here at six this morning. What a brilliant hero this bloke is. It seems to be to me like he is sending a message out to the world about dwelling with HIV.’
The previous wales and British Lions fullback entered the ocean at Tenby’s north Seashore at 7am together with 2,300 different rivals.
He accomplished the two.3-mile swim in an estimated 1 hour 29 minutes and appeared recent and powerful on the transition to the cycle component of the race which ends with a full marathon.
Thomas, carrying quantity 50, was given one other enormous cheer when his identify was introduced over the PA system on the occasion which is able to take 17 hours for some rivals to finish.
He stated he hoped his public acknowledgement of his sexuality would assist different younger homosexual sportsmen search help from charities similar to Childline.
Thomas appeared as a contestant on TV’s Movie star Massive Brother the place he reached the ultimate three.
He additionally appeared on Dancing on Ice as a pundit and has been given his personal exhibits on BBC Wales together with Run for Your Life when he educated a gaggle of chubby and unfit ladies from the Welsh Valleys to get match for the Cardiff Half Marathon.
Final November Thomas was the sufferer of an homophobic assault whereas out with pals in Cardiff Metropolis Centre.
He posted a video on his Twitter Web page exhibiting his bruised and minimize face from the Saturday evening ‘hate crime’ within the Welsh capital.
A 16-year-old boy was later handled by restorative justice and met with Thomas to apologise for his actions.
In 2017 he made a TV documentary known as Gareth Thomas v Homophobia difficult homosexual taunts utilized by soccer followers at Premiership matches.
He’ll now function in a brand new documentary entitled: Gareth Thomas: HIV and ME, which is able to air on BBC One on Wednesday September 18 at 9pm.
Thomas has devoted the previous few months getting match for Ironman Wales, which is happening within the West Wales seaside resort of Tenby.
He’s one among greater than 2,000 novice rivals who lined up at 7am for the swimming leg of the gruelling race.
There have been cries of ‘Come on Alfie’ and ‘Go Gareth’ as he mounted his black racing bike for a 112-mile race by way of Pembrokeshire’s nation roads after finishing the two.3-mile swimming part in just below an hour and a half.
Thomas waved on the crowds however appeared ruggedly decided and there was no smiles from the ex-rugby star the day after he revealed he’s battling HIV.
WHO IS GARETH THOMAS?
Gareth Thomas is a former Welsh rugby participant. He has represented Wales in each Rugby Union and Rugby League and was essentially the most capped participant within the nation till he was overtaken in 2011.
He got here out as homosexual in 2009 following a cut up from his spouse and childhood sweetheart Jemma in 2007, turning into the primary openly-gay rugby participant in Britain.
Thomas, who’s affectionately often called ‘Alfie’ as a consequence of his ‘resemblance to the alien character within the TV sitcom ‘Alf’, battled together with his sexuality for years, telling of how he was pushed to the brink of suicide on a number of events.
He instructed the Day by day Mail in December 2009: ‘I used to be like a ticking bomb. I believed I may suppress it, hold it locked away in some darkish nook of myself, however I could not.
‘It was who I used to be, and I simply could not ignore it any extra. I would been by way of each emotion beneath the solar making an attempt to take care of this.
‘You get up one morning pondering: ‘I can deal with it. Every part is okay,’ and the following morning you do not need anybody to see your face, since you suppose that if folks take a look at you, they may know.’
Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas is pictured in October 2010
He went on: ‘Generally I felt so alone and depressed. I’ve stood on so many cliff edges.
‘I used to go to the cliffs overlooking the seashore close to our cottage in St Brides Main and simply take into consideration leaping off and ending all of it.’
The 12 months after he got here out he was voted essentially the most influential homosexual particular person within the UK and has since labored with a number of LGBT charities amongst others.
Thomas is the youngest of three sons. His older brothers are Richard and Steven. His father Barry, 69, is a retired postal employee, and his mom Yvonne, 70, a former hospital secretary.
He started his sporting profession together with his native Bridgend in 1994, staying there for 3 years. He made his debut for Wales the next 12 months, representing his nation till 2007.
With 100 appearances he was essentially the most capped Welsh Rugby Union participant ever till 2011 when the accolade was taken by Stephen Jones.
He performed for Wales on the 2007 Rugby World Cup and performed in 4 tournaments altogether
The fullback was the second highest attempt scorer for Wales, behind Shane Williams and captained for his nation, and numerous membership squads.
At membership degree Thomas performed for Bridgend, Cardiff RFC, Celtic Warriors, Cardiff Blues and French facet Toulouse.
Throughout his time in France he was discovered responsible of assault in 2005. Two years later he was banned from the sport for 4 week on misconduct costs.
Whereas he was nonetheless enjoying in France he suffered a serious well being scare after a neck damage. He was later rushed to hospital and was suspected to have had a stroke, with fears the influence on his well being could have led to his retirement.
After marrying childhood sweetheart Jemma in 2002, the couple struggled with relationship issues.
Thomas stated he ‘knew he was homosexual’ on the age of round 16 or 17, however failed to simply accept it till years later.
He admitted dishonest on her a number of instances, insisting he at all times practised protected intercourse when sleeping with males.
Thomas shall be a part of ITV’s broadcast group for the upcoming World Cup in Japan this month
The couple had been married for 5 years, throughout which era Jemma suffered three miscarriages. They cut up in 2007 with the divorce finalised in 2009.
Thomas carried on enjoying rugby till 2011 when he suffered a damaged arm. After lacking two months, he introduced he could be retiring from the game in October that 12 months.
Since he got here out in 2009, Thomas has labored with quite a few charities, together with ChildLine, the Terrance Higgins Belief and Stonewall.
He was an ITV rugby pundit in the course of the 2011 and 2015 World Cups.
In January 2012 he went into the Movie star Massive Brother Home, ending within the ultimate three.
A 12 months later he appeared on Dancing On Ice, when he was partnered with skilled skater Robin Johnstone.
Thomas is pictured participating in Dancing On Ice in January 2013 alongside his skating companion Robin Johnstone
This was across the time a movie was as a consequence of be made about Thomas’s life. Actor Tom Hardy was as a consequence of play Thomas, however the movie later fell by way of.
His autobiography Proud was launched in 2015, which gave distressing particulars about his battle together with his sexuality.
In November 2018 he was assaulted in Cardiff metropolis centre in a homophobic assault. He took to social media to share his ordeal and requested South Wales police take care of the 16-year-old suspect by means of restorative justice.
In September 2019 he turned the primary main British sports activities star to come back out as HIV-positive.
He stated he has been dwelling with the virus ‘for years’ and in addition revealed he’s now re-married to a person named Stephen, 56.
His husband doesn’t have HIV and the couple dwell in Bridgend, South Wales, with Stephen’s 23-year-old daughter Anna.