Criminal Law Exam Revision

Criminal offences - types of offences and descriptions of both offences

Actus reus - description + cases

Omissions - act through duty (cases)

Causation - types of causation, cases, examples and cases of breaks in causation

Mens rea - description

Two stage mens rea test - case this was applied in

Transfered and general malice - description and cases

Strict liability - description / cases /FOR / AGAINST

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Criminal Offences
There are two types of criminal offences:
1) Conduct Crimes ­ there doesn't HAVE to be a bad result
(dangerous driving). There needs not be harm or
consequence shown
2) Result Crimes ­ there needs to be proof of a prohibited
consequence (murder, rape)

Actus Reus…

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The prosecution must prove:
D's conduct was a factual cause of the consquesence
D's conduct was `in law' the cause of the consequence
There was no intervening act to break the chain of

There are two types of causation ­ factual and legal

Factual causation: `but for' (would…

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However, not always, in these two cases medical treatment did
not break the chain:

Smith ­ soldier was stabbed by another soldier, he was
dropped on way to medical center, original attacker
was found liable
Cheshire ­ Dft shot V in the stomach, he was given a tube to help…

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wherther the accused desired that consequence of his act or not'
­ this is known as direct intent.

There might be problems if one consequence was intended but
another was caused. This is known as `oblique' intent, or
foresight of consequence.

Woollin ­ dft threw 3 month old baby at…

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Mitchell ­ in a post office, people queing, Mitchell pushing in, an
man shouted at him. Mitchell pushed the old man,
fell onto and pushed over an old lady ­ she later died.
Dft liable for the old lady's death.

Different type:
Pembiliton ­ dft threw a stone…

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maintenance and inspection
programme. Was not their fault, but
they were proven guilty.

Smedleys v Braed ­ one tin of peas out of millions
produced contained a caterpillar.
Dfts were convicted under the Food
and Drugs Act 1955, even though
they had taken all reasonable care.

LBH v Shah ­…

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convicted him guIlty. Appeal at
Crown Court ­ conviction was
quashed due to Sweet v Parsley ­ it
held that the ofence against him
required mens rea as to the age of
the child ­ either

Arguments FOR strict liability:
Helps protect society by promoting greater care over


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