Duress by Threats

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1. Threats to family and even friends can be a basis for the defence as in the case of

  • Another person threatens the defendant with serious violence unless the defendant commits an offence
  • All crimes except murder, attempted murder and possibly treason
  • Martin, where the wife of the defendant threatened to commit suicide unless he drove disqualified
  • Can use the defence of intoxication, eg if threatened by a man with a gun
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2. The threat must be imminent, and operating on the defendant's mind when he commits the offence

  • Can use the defence of intoxication, eg if threatened by a man with a gun
  • Abdul-Hussain, the defendant's hijacked a plane to escape from persecution in iraq
  • All crimes except murder, attempted murder and possibly treason
  • Age, pregnancy, serious physical disability, recognised mental illness or psychiatric disorder, sex - iQ can not be considered

3. Duress by threats is where

  • Another person threatens the defendant with serious violence unless the defendant commits an offence
  • All crimes except murder, attempted murder and possibly treason
  • Can use the defence of intoxication, eg if threatened by a man with a gun
  • Age, pregnancy, serious physical disability, recognised mental illness or psychiatric disorder, sex - iQ can not be considered

4. There is a subjective and objective test laid down in the case of Graham to decide if

  • Can use the defence of intoxication, eg if threatened by a man with a gun
  • Age, pregnancy, serious physical disability, recognised mental illness or psychiatric disorder, sex - iQ can not be considered
  • The defence should succeed
  • All crimes except murder, attempted murder and possibly treason

5. If police protection is possible then the defendant can not rely on duress, however as in the case of ________ police protection may not always be available

  • Another person threatens the defendant with serious violence unless the defendant commits an offence
  • Age, pregnancy, serious physical disability, recognised mental illness or psychiatric disorder, sex - iQ can not be considered
  • Hudson and Taylor - where two girls lied under oath because of threats to cut them up
  • Can use the defence of intoxication, eg if threatened by a man with a gun

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