Duress/Necessity Fashcards

  • Created by: bananaaar
  • Created on: 04-05-15 14:50
What crimes is duress no defence?
Murder [Howe], Attempted murder [Gotts],
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Age in duress?
Regardless of age [Wilson]
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Definition of duress by threats?
When one person threatens another, D's 'will is overborne'. D is acting under duress.
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What case summarised the elements of duress?
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Elements of duress?
1) threat must be death/serious injury 2) threat must be directed against 3) jury must have regard to reasonableness of D's perceptions/conduct 4) directly caused by threat 5) no evasive action could been taken 6) not voluntarily laid open to duress
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Degree of Duress: Threat?
Must be of serious injury or death [Hudson and Taylor]
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Degree of Duress: Threat of lesser harm?
Threat of lesser harm will not suffice [Quayle]
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D argued the defence of duress to a charge of growing cannabis. He was in pain and it was the only drug that allowed him to sleep without knocking him out. CA ruled that the defence should be confined to threats of physical injury not just pain.
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Psychological injury?
Not included, must be physical injury. [Baker and Wilkins]
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[Baker and Wilkins]
After father of child refused to return child after contact visit D damaged front door and pleaded duress on crim-damage charge. D argued that daughter would suffer psychiatric harm. CA refused to extend defence to psychiatric harm.
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Threat of exposure?
Threat of exposure of secret sexual orientation is insufficient [Valderamma-Vega]
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D claimed he had imported cocaine because of death threats. He had also been threatened with having his sexuality exposed. Conviction quashed. Although there must be a threat of death/serious injury, it need not be the sole reason.
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Nominated offence?
Duress is only a defence if D commits a specific offence which was nominated by the person making the threat [Cole]
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Money lenders threatened D if he didn't repay money. D robbed 2 building societies. Conviction was upheld by CA as the duressors had not said 'go rob 2 building societies'.
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Who can duress be against?
D personally [Graham] [Cairns], family, [Ortiz] [Conway] [Martin], person who D feels reasonably responsible for [Wright]
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D was a homosexual who lived with his wide and K. D helped K kill wife and said he acted as he was scared of K. CA created standard test.
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Graham test?
Was the D compelled to act because he reasonably believed he had a good reason to fear death/serious injury? Would a sober person of reasonable firmness, sharing same characteristics as D have acted in same way.
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Threat had to be directed at D personally.
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The defence was allowed when D's ar passenger was threatened.
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D's wife threatened to harm herself. D suffered from disorder which meant he perceived things said to him as a threat that would be carried out. He had this when he was forced to carry out 2 robberies.
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Imminence of threat?
Threat must be believed to be immediate or almost immediate [Hudson and Taylor] [Abdul-Hussain and others] [Hasan]
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[Hudson and Taylor]
D's were teenage girls who gave perjured evidence because threatened with having faces cut. CA quashed conviction as could have sought police protection but not realistic for them.
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D hijacked a plane which landed in Uk as feared return to Iraq. CA overturned convictions, threat need only be imminent.
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D assosiated with violent drug dealer and told to burgle house and open safe or he and family harmed. He entered home but couldn't open safe. No defence as association with drug dealer meant foresaw risk of compulsion by threats.
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Opportunities to escape?
D will be expected to take advantage of a reasonable opportunity to escape [Gill] [Pommell] [Hudson and Taylor]
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D claimed he and wife had been threatened unless he stole lory. No defence as D could have reported threat in time lapse before theft.
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Police found D at 1:30 am lying with gun in hand. Man came over with a gun and he was going to hand over gun in morning. Ca accepted that in some cases a delay makes it clear that any duress must have ceased to operate. But CA allowed a retrial.
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Association with crime?
Voluntarily joining violent criminal gang meand D may not have defence [Fitzpatrick], same with violent criminals [Ali] [Baker] [Heath] Only if D foresaw subject to duress [Shepherd] [Hassan].
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D pleaded duress even though he was member of IRA. Rejected defence as where D put himself in criminal gang which he knows may bring pressure on him to commit an offence, he cannot avail himself to the defence.
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D joined robbery gang, threatened with violence when tried to leave. D no defence as he knew gang was likely to use violence.
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No requirement that a particular bank or building society be nominated by person making threats. 'Do a robbery' would be sufficient.
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D owed money to drug dealer and threatened so supplied cannabis. D no defence as knew getting into debt with drug dealer mean threat of violence existed.
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D joined shoplifting gang, threatened with violence when tried to leave. D conviction quashed as D had no knowledge that gang were likely to use violence.
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D was one of a group who abused and killed a man. On later occasion D abused and killed a man. He said he acted because he had been threatened. HL refused defence of duress as no life was worth more than another.
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D, aged 13, and father accused of mother's murder. D said scared to disobey his father. D had no defence, age is no excuse.
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D, aged 16, threatened with violence by father so stabbed mother. No defence to duress for attempted murder.
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D obtained goods by deception for men who threatened to petrol bomb D and his family. D's low IQ not relevant characteristic as not part of ability tor resist pressure and threats.
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What is duress of circumstancces?
D is forced to act due to a set of circumstances. Mainly driving cases. Same rules as duress of threats, it is no defence to murder or attempted murder.
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D and passenger in car surrounded by threatening youths. D drove slowly on pavement to escape. CA said jury should be able to consider whether D drove under some kind of duress.
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D's passenger saw men and thought they had shot at him so D drove off fast. CA quashed conviction saying duress possible defence if from Ds perspective acting to avoid threat of death/serious injury
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D's wife threatened suicide unless D drove son to work. D had lost licence. CA adapted test from graham.
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D found by police with gun in hand during drugs raid. D said taken gun from man and going to hand it in. CA held duress of circumstances could apply to any offence.
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Duress of necessity definition?
rarely a defence in itself but may be used to reduce a sentence. Available for trespass [Southwark London Burrough v Williams], possession of a controlled drug [Altham], traffic violations [Johnson and Phillips]
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[Southwark London Burrough v Williams]
Family evicted from an empty council house could not plead the defence of necessity in order to trespass in empty houses owned by local council.
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Characteristics relevant to duress?
Age, gender, pregnancy, physical disability, mental illness.
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D believed that using cannabis was necessary to avoid suffering pain arising from medical condition. CA held that this defence could not be raised, must be physical injury not just pain.
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[Johnson v Phillips]
D was waiting in vehicle behind ambulance. Police officer told D to reverse 15 uards down a one way street to allow ambulance through. D refused. CA held that D would have been able to rely on defence of necessity if committed the traffic violations.
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Necessity and murder?
The lesser of two evils. Where D is forced to act in order to prevent worse evil happening.
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[Dudley and Stephens]
D adrift at sea without food and water so ate cabin boy. No defence - no life worth more than another, however sentence was reduced.
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[Re F]
Health authority apple for declaration to sterilise D, a severely mentally disabled woman at risk of pregnancy. HL granted declaration - lawful duty of doctors to act based on necessity.
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[Re A]
Health authority applied for declaration to separate conjoined twins so one lived but other died. Act done to avoid unavoidable consequences which would inflict inevitable evil. No more evil done than reasonably necessary so allowed.
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D past member of MI5 charged with breaching OSA 1989. No defence of necessity and redefined as same test was used as in Re A. Suggested duress of circumstances and necessity interchangeable.
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Man threw himself on to bonnet of Ds car. D felt threatened and drove off with man on bonnet. D braked and man badly injured. Ds conviction quashed as reasonably perceived threat of serious injury/death.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


Age in duress?


Regardless of age [Wilson]

Card 3


Definition of duress by threats?


Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4


What case summarised the elements of duress?


Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5


Elements of duress?


Preview of the front of card 5
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