Mens rea translates to: GUILTY MIND.
It refers to the mental element of a crime.
It must be proven alongside actus reus for a defendant to be guilty of an offence.
Remember the criminal liability equation: Guilty = actus reus + mens rea.
There are two types of mens rea:
Basic intent crimes = both intention or recklessness need to be proven to establish mens rea.
Specific intent crimes = crimes for which intetion needs to be proven. Recklessness is not sufficient to satisfy mens rea.
INTENTION - highest form of mens rea.
There are two types of intention; direct (actions are desired) and oblique (virtual certainty).
Direct intent- D makes a decision to bring about a certain consequence (desired the result). AIM, OBJECTIVE AND PURPOSE.
In Mohan 1975 it was held that D attempted to run over police officer despite being signaled to stop he was charged with dangerous driving causing bodily harm. Motive here is irrelevant, the important point is that the defendant decided to bring about the out come.
IMPORTANT NOTE!!!- if…