A Finnish court has ruled that a man intentionally transmitted HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, to five women and had unprotected sex with at least 14 others, exposing them to possible infection.

In all, 21 women brought charges against Aki Hakkarainen for wilfully attempting to infect them with HIV, but the court in the northern Finnish town of Rovaniemi found there was insufficient evidence in two of the cases.

It ordered the 25-year-old Finn to undergo a psychological examination before his sentence and the amount of damages were determined.

Hakkarainen would await sentencing in prison since he was likely to continue his 'criminal activities' if released, the court said in a statement.

The prosecutor in the case has called for Hakkarainen to be sentenced to 12 years behind bars, while the plaintiffs have requested total damages to the tune of €500,000.