Fatal Offences

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Fatal Offence: Murder

Definition: "where a person of sound mind unlawfully kills any reasonable creature in being and under the Queens peace with malice aforethought, either express or implied"

Actus Reus: The killing must unlawful, the victim must be a human when attacked, the victim must die, under the queens peace Mens Rea: malice aforethought either express or implied.

Malice aforethought means that murder is a specific intent crime. Express or implied means that either of two intentions is sufficient.

express malice is the intetion to kill;

implied malice is the intetion to grevious bodily harm

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Case Examples

R v Vickers (1957) Vickers was found shoplifting by an old lady, he struck her with a number of blows and killed her he did not use a weapon and there was no suggestion that he intended to kill her. The court of appeal held that there were two types of malice aforethought and either was sufficient to make the defendant guilty.

The intention to cause gbh is sufficient to make a defindant guilty of murder if the victim dies in R v Vickers

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