Defences Critical Analysis

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NFO Critical Analysis

  • Sentencing got s.47 and s.20 is the same yet s.20 is a more severe injury. Reform: s.47 stays at 5 years and s.20 is increased to 7 years
  • Definition of malicious and the confusion of legal terms and lay man terms. Malicious legally means to have "specific intent to do some harm," Reform: s.18 defined as intentionally cause serious harm and s.20 is recklessly cause serious harm
  • Confusion of assualt and battery Reform: cause fear of bodily impact/cause bodily impact

Key Acts of Parliament:

  • Offences Against the Person Act 1861
  • Draft Bill 1998
  • Law Commission Report 1993
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Defences Critical Analysis

Self Defence:

  • all or nothing approach, Martin Reforn: Coroners and Justice Act 2009 introduced Loss of Control however there is still the all or nothing approach for other offences such as s.18 GBH
  • reasonable force: Martin/ Armstrong Braun Reform: define as grossly disproportionate in the Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2006 so a jury doesn't have to decide whether the force was reasonable


  • M'Naughten case definitions are outdated Reform: none as of yet however the LC are reviewing
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Murder and Manslaughter Critical Analysis

  • The definition of oblique intention has been changed several times that it is now unclear what definition actually defines oblique intention. First defined by Maloney, then Hancock and Shankland, followed by Nedrick and then by Woolin. Reform: direct intent is first degree murder and oblique intention is defined in second degree murder
  • The mandatory life sentence imposed Reform: a judgec an recommend a minimum amount of years a D must serve before being elegiable for release
  • Burden of Proof is on D on in Diminished Responsibility (Lambart) but is on the Prosecution for Loss of Control Reform: no reform however it can be easily solved

Key Acts of Parliament:

  • Murder Act 1965
  • Coroners and Justice Act 2009
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