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Actus Reus and
Causation…read more

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Involuntary Acts
O Both an Actus Reus and Mens Rea of a crime
are required
O However, when the action of a crime is
involuntary, then the actus reus is not
formed
O Hill v Baxter ­ Here, examples were given of
involuntary actions, such as sneezing, being
hit on the head etc.…read more

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Omissions
O Generally, in English Law, a failure or omission to
act foes not form the actus reus, however, in
certain circumstances it does.
O Pitwood ­ Contractual Duty
O Dytham ­ Public Duty
O Act of Parliament e.g. childrens seatbelt
O Miller ­ Failure to minimise harmful
consequences of previous act
O Stone and Dobinson - When voluntary care is
taken…read more

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Causation
O The rules of causation are applied to see
whether the defendants's guilty act caused
the particular consequence
O Both factual and legal causation must be
proven…read more

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Factual Causation
O This is all to do with the `but for' rule
O White ­ Here, `but for' the defendants actions
(cyanide poisoning) the victim would have
died anyway, so the d cannot be guilty of the
crime
O Paggett ­ But for the defendant using his
girlfriend as a human shield, she wouldn't
have died. Therefore, factual causation is
proven…read more

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