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Frisco man gets 45 years for hiding HIV infection from sex partners
  04:19 PM CDT on Friday, May 29, 2009
"Sutherland, who hobbled to the stand on crutches, said she suffers from a variety of HIV-related ailments, including bone loss."
By DIANE JENNINGS / The Dallas Morning News
McKINNEY – A Frisco man will serve 45 years in prison for failing to disclose that he was infected with HIV before having sex with at least six women.
Phillipe Padieu, a former martial arts instructor, showed no emotion as he was sentenced to 45 years for five of the cases and 25 years for the remaining case. The sentences will run concurrently.
The court was preparing to hear from the women this afternoon during victim impact statements.
Earlier this week, Padieu was found guilty of six counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon after a jury determined he had unprotected sex with a half-dozen women without telling them he had tested positive for HIV, the virus that causes AIDS.
"He gave them a death sentence," assistant district attorney Lisa King had told the jury. "He deserves a life sentence."
Defense attorney Bennie House had said 20 years would be appropriate punishment because by the time Padieu would be released, he would be too old to do much damage. Padieu is 53.
"What makes anyone think that if he does get out, he’ll be young enough to start the lifestyle again?" House said.
On Thursday, against the advice of his attorney, Padieu took the stand, declaring himself to be the victim of angry women and overzealous prosecutors.
"No way would I ever do that," Padieu told the jury. "This is something perpetrated on me to deny their own responsibility."
His surprise testimony came after a parade of sometimes tearful women told jurors how the HIV diagnosis had almost ruined their lives and how they feared for their future if he were to receive a light sentence and eventually be released.
Padieu said all the women who testified at trial had multiple partners and all their partners had not been tested. He said he suspected one of them infected him.
The women, who have formed a support group since learning of their diagnoses, are actually a "hate group," Padieu said, reading the Texas legal definition to jurors.
"These women are in a very dark, sinister place," he said. "They want vengeance."
Before Padieu's testimony, prosecutors asked four of the women he assaulted if they would be afraid if Padieu were ever released from prison.
"I would be in fear of my life," said a woman who testified under the pseudonym Barbara Sutherland. "He's already tried to kill me once," she said, noting he'd given her AIDS. "I fear he'd try to do it again."
Sutherland, who hobbled to the stand on crutches, said she suffers from a variety of HIV-related ailments, including bone loss.
Padieu, who has been in jail since his arrest in July 2007, said he posed no danger to the women who testified against him, or to others.
He said during his testimony that he would not go after the women and he is done with his former lifestyle.
"My lifestyle has totally changed," he said. "I've been on permanent lockdown for two years." Even if he were not incarcerated, "I'm not going to go out there and get into that lifestyle," he said.
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