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Man charged with infecting 22 people with COVID-19 after coughing on colleagues

A Spanish man with COVID-19 symptoms who coughed on work colleagues and told them “I’m going to give you all the coronavirus” has been charged with intentionally causing injury after allegedly infecting 22 people.

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Spanish police said their investigation began after a COVID-19 outbreak at the company where the 40-year-old man worked on the Mediterranean island of Mallorca.

Days before the outbreak, the man showed COVID-19 symptoms but refused his colleagues’ suggestions to go home and self-isolate, police said in a statement.

After work, and showing no improvement, he went for a PCR test before visiting a gym and returning to work the next day. Though his superiors told him to go home after he allegedly had showed a temperature of 40 degrees Celsius, the man refused.

He walked around his workplace, lowering his face mask and coughing on people, saying “I’m going to infect you all with the coronavirus,” according to police.

At the end of the day, his PCR test came back positive. His colleagues were then tested, with five returning positive results. They in turn infected family members, including three infants, police said. At the gym the man visited, three people tested positive and also infected family members.

None of those infected required hospitalization, police said.

A judge charged the man, who was not identified by police, and released him on Saturday evening to await trial, Spain’s Europa Press news agency reported.

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