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Florida dentist David J. Acer, suspected in the AIDS infections of six people, was most likely a serial killer who intentionally infected his patients, a Harvard researcher said Wednesday in a published report.

Internationally known behavioral scientist Leonard G. Horowitz of Rockport, Mass., said his research shows the late dentist's profile matches those of 36 serial killers studied by the FBI, as well as four others who knowingly exposed people to the AIDS virus.Authorities had assumed the infections to be an "accident," but Horowitz said that there is now "substantial evidence" to believe Acer infected the patients on purpose, although Horowitz conceded that the evidence was circumstantial.

Horowitz, a Harvard graduate researcher, who also has a doctorate in dentistry, said he based his conclusions on a three-year study of previously unreported medical and legal documents.

He said Acer infected the patients to "express a vendetta" against the U.S. Public Health Service and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The scientist said Acer's principal motive was to seek revenge against the health agencies he believed infected homosexuals with AIDS during an experimental hepatitis B vaccination program in the 1970s.

The first of at least six people allegedly infected by Acer, Kimberly Bergalis, later died of AIDS. Horowitz said his findings support the theory that Acer murdered Bergalis, even though some media reports claimed the six alleged victims engaged in risky sexual activities and could have been infected elsewhere.

Horowitz called such claims "indefensible."