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National wrestling champ sentenced to 60 years for knowingly spreading HIV

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Former JUCO wrestling champ, Michael Johnson, jailed for recklessly spreading HIV.

Michael Johnson, a former wrestling champion from Lincoln College, Illinois, has found himself at the center of a legal battle pertaining to his alleged sexual indiscretions. Johnson, who is also known by his online alter ego "Tiger Mandingo," has been accused of knowingly spreading HIV to a number of sexual partners that he met on gay dating apps.

Following a 3 day trial, a jury needed just 3 hours of deliberations to find Johnson guilty of one count of recklessly infecting a partner with HIV, 1 count of attempting to recklessly infect a partner with HIV and 3 counts of recklessly exposing a partner to HIV. At sentencing on Friday the wrestling standout was given a total of 60 years imprisonment, though Johnson's legal team plan to attempt to have the time served concurrently, which if successful would mean that Johnson would only serve 30 years in total.

According to Buzzfeed's Steven Thrasher, Johnson has maintained his innocence despite a barrage of evidence from the prosecution:

"All six of Johnson's accusers testified that Johnson did not disclose his HIV status. Multiple medical professionals testified that they had informed Johnson of his status and advised him it was a felony to fail to disclose.

"Johnson for his part testified that he had disclosed his HIV status to all six of his sexual partners before they had sex."

Prior to his convictions, Michael Johnson had showed a proficiency for wrestling and was a Junior College wrestling champion at Lincoln College in Illinois, which has notable mixed martial arts alumni including Mike Russow and UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes, who boasted a 33-3 record on the mats for the Lynx.