A Victorian government department is facing accusations it failed to take steps to stop a Melbourne man from knowingly transmitting HIV, despite knowing the man might be spreading the infection.The ABC’s AM program reported the Victorian Department of Human Services received complaints about 47-year-old Michael Neal five years ago.Neal, a HIV-positive grandfather of five, was arrested last week and charged with 17 offences, including intentionally infecting one man with HIV and attempting to transmit the virus to others.AM reported some of the charges could relate to Melbourne gay beats.Neal is alleged to have had unprotected sex between 2000 and 2005.As in NSW, it is a crime in Victoria to knowingly infect someone with HIV.However, legal experts told AM Victorian government departments were not obliged to inform police about someone deliberately spreading HIV.They have a power to detain the person to prevent him or her infecting other people but they’re not required to do that and nor are they are required to tell police, University of Melbourne law professor Loane Skene said.The Victorian Department of Human Services is refusing to comment as the police investigation continues.Last December a Brisbane gay man was sentenced to 10-and-a-half years in prison for knowingly infecting his lover with HIV.Earlier that month Sydney man Stanislas Kanengele-Yondjo received a prison term of at least nine years for knowingly transmitting HIV to two women.

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