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University Degree: Criminal law

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  • Marked by Teachers essays 34
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  1. Marked by a teacher

    "There is no statutory definition of intention in English law. Indeed, over the past few decades there has been much controversy over the actual meaning of the concept 'intention'". Explain and evaluate this statement.

    5 star(s)

    Lord Steyn suggested obiter, in the House of Lords (HoL) judgement of R v Woolin4, that 'intention' did not necessarily have precisely the same meaning in every context in criminal law. There are two types of intention with regard to prohibited consequences5, direct intention and indirect (oblique) intention. Direct intention is said to be when the accused foresaw the possibility that his act would bring about the proscribed consequence6. For example if D is enraged by his supervisor at work and intends to kill him.

    • Word count: 2374
  2. Marked by a teacher

    Offender Profiling...............USA or UK?

    5 star(s)

    typologies, depending on demographic and crime scene characteristics (Burger et al, 1986). The typologies were incorporated into the crone classification manual, a guide for the FBI investigators producing offender profiles (Ressler et al, 1992). Although the FBI claims that their work is backed up empirical research, their results are criticised for methodological weaknesses present within the research. Coleman and Morris (2000) state that results gained from research that lacks a control group should be generalised to other groups within society. Also, Canter and Alison (2000) consider FBI profiling to be retrospective self reporting information and caution should be taken due to the factor of recall bias.

    • Word count: 2718
  3. Marked by a teacher

    The search of Arnold - Police stop and search powers.

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    In this case it is in The Shires shopping centre in Leicester; this suggests that it complied with s.1(1) and 1(4) of PACE, unless the police officer took him to a part of the shopping centre which was not open to the public. However, this isn't specified in the information given to us, so we can assume that this was not the case. A fundamental requirement for a stop and search to be lawful is the need for "reasonable grounds"3 for suspicion that a person is carrying stolen or prohibited articles, or any articles to which subsection (8A) in section 1 PACE applies.

    • Word count: 2143
  4. Marked by a teacher

    Under the current law, homeowners are permitted to use "reasonable force" against intruders.[3] However this standard is criticised for being unclear and weighted too much in favour of the intruders.[4] Under the proposed law, homeowners would be convicte

    4 star(s)

    and shall be considered in turn. Necessity of force Whether the use of force is necessary in the circumstances is to be judged according to the defendant's honest and instinctive belief in the circumstances.12 It is a subjective test. It does not matter whether the belief was a mistaken one so long as it was honestly held13 (save and except for the situation of self-induced intoxication14) or whether the belief was reasonable.15 This subjective belief is limited to only matters of fact and does not extend to matters of law.16 A homeowner is not protected where they mistakenly believe that the degree of force used was

    • Word count: 3339
  5. Marked by a teacher

    Chain of causation problem question. The given case is concerned with the law on homicide in English Criminal Law. Albert is likely to be accused of three different offences; the death of Bert amounting to involuntary manslaughter, the injuries suffered

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    Discuss the criminal liability of Albert, adding critical comment where you think the law is unsatisfactory. You need not consider offences under the Misuse of Drugs Act 1971. The given case is concerned with the law on homicide in English Criminal Law. Albert is likely to be accused of three different offences; the death of Bert amounting to involuntary manslaughter, the injuries suffered by Carol leading to s47 Offences Against the Persons Act and the death of Diane amounting to gross negligence manslaughter.

    • Word count: 2165
  6. Marked by a teacher

    Critically consider all arguments concerning spousal compellability and conclude whether or not it is justifiable.

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    Criminal Evidence Act 1984, s80.9? Section 80 gave the general rule that a spouse is not compellable for the prosecution of her husband, with specified offences as exceptions.10 The Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 made necessary amendments11 to the PACE, and following this, the Civil Partnership Act 2004 extended the rule to include civil partners. It is evident that the reforms were in dire need, however, it is heavily debated whether the current law on spousal compellability is justified.

    • Word count: 3747
  7. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Law Omissions. In the English legal system there is generally no liability for an omission to act, the English legal system does not have a good Samaritan rule neither is there no duty of easy rescue.

    4 star(s)

    Such as a parent and child relationship. In Downes 18753 which is an early authority on how the law imposes a duty on a special relationship in this case the father failed to provide appropriate medical assistance to their child, they were a religious family and instead of seeing a doctor they were hopeful that the child would be healed by his parents religious prayers, however the child died and the parents sought no medical attention for an ill child so the courts found they were guilty of manslaughter as s47 of the poor law amendment act 1868 had imposed a duty on them and the courts went with this statute to convict Downes.

    • Word count: 2686
  8. Marked by a teacher

    Homicide. Unlawful killing is when and a person of sound mind and of the age of discretion can commit the actus Reus of murder by unlawfully killing another person. This means that the defendant in a murder case must be legally responsible for his actions

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    A key argument in this case is that the murder of Jamie Bulger in 1993 was carried out by two 10 year olds and although child murderers are uncommon, should it happen again in the future, the children who are involved in the act would not be held responsible for their actions. The actus reus in murder is broken down to unlawfully killing another person and that the defendant must have caused the death, The death must also be of a human being which does cause a confliction within the law as to when life begins.

    • Word count: 2331
  9. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Law - Problem Question - Homicide

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    Discuss the liability of the following: 1. Alan for the death of Brian. 2. Alan for the destruction of the vase. 3. Doctor Chris for the death of Brian. Alan for the death of Brian The first issue here is whether Alan is, prima facie, guilty of homicide, either murder or manslaughter, and, if he is, whether he will be able to rely on the defences of insanity, intoxication, provocation or diminished responsibility. The actus reus of murder and manslaughter, both common law offences, was given by Coke in the seventeenth century: "Murder is when a man of sound memory,

    • Word count: 3588
  10. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Justice System of Great Britain

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    and old enough to know right from wrong are forced to face the consequences of their actions. The youth justice system can impose sentences up to 24 months detention in a young offenders unit or a fixed amount of community service (Youth Justice Board Website, 2010) Three types of criminal offence are trialled between these two systems. They are Summary, Either-way or Indictable offences. The level of severity of an offence will dictate which category it belongs to. Many of the cases that commence at the Magistrates Court will also come to term there; however a proportion of cases that are deemed most serious in nature and require a custodial sentence will proceed to the Crown Court system.

    • Word count: 1926
  11. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Justice

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    I became a bit suspicious but didn't really think much of it. Six months down the road my husband came to me and told me that he was the person who was involved in the hit and run in the red Mercedes-Benz. My husband put my in a very tough position by telling me that he was the person that the police were trying to locate involved in the hit and run six months prior. I knew that if I went to the police I could also be held accountable for keeping the information to myself.

    • Word count: 1484
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    Before proceeding further it is necessary to clarify what is meant by an omission. An omission is the failure to act which can sometimes give rise to criminal liability and this failure to act can constitute the actus reus of an offence (Herring, 2006). According to Herring (2006, p88), the criminal law on omissions states that 'a defendant is guilty of a crime only when failing to act, where he or she is under a duty to act'. These acts and omissions can be placed under the 'general rubric' of 'conduct' (Fletcher, 1978). To continue, the distinction between an omission and an act is unclear and it depends on the definition of the offence if criminal liability for an omission can be imposed (Card, 2004).

    • Word count: 1767
  13. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Justice, Miscarriages of justice

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    The case of Steven Downing illustrates miscarriages of formal justice very well. Formal justice includes:- - Provision of public funding for a civil or criminal case and access to law - The operation of the doctrine of precedent - The process of statutory interpretation - Sentencing procedures - Provision of appeals On Friday 18 August, 2000, BBC news published an article 'fight to clear murder convict'. This reported of campaigners fighting for the release of a man jailed 27 years ago for murdering a woman in a cemetery have suggested the crime could be linked to an unsolved killing in 1970.

    • Word count: 3078
  14. Marked by a teacher

    Art and part liability

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    However, the onus would be on the getaway driver to prove he was unaware in the planning that the killer was going to be in possession of a weapon with intent to use it. This example of art and part liability briefly outlines the law on it; however, I will examine the full extent of the law in more detail later. In order for criminal liability on an art and part basis to be proved and a criminal conviction made, the court must be persuaded beyond a reasonable doubt of the guilt of the accused by the evidence presented by the Crown, and in light of any countervailing evidence led by the defence.

    • Word count: 2017
  15. Marked by a teacher

    criminal law assignment

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    This provides that 'if a person agrees with another that a course of conduct shall be pursued, which, if the agreement is carried out in accordance with their intentions will involve the commission of any offence, then he is guilty of a conspiracy'3. It is the intention of Alan to steal which clearly constitutes a conspiracy which he would be liable for. Next we see that Alan may be liable for burglary. Section 9 of the Theft Act 19684 provides that a person is guilty of burglary if he enters a building as a trespasser with intent to commit an offence5.

    • Word count: 3818
  16. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Law,dealing with the subject of murder and how applying the general principles of criminal law will help us in deciding an outcome

    4 star(s)

    After half time, Swaniff City were clearly leading so John decided to release the flares. He points them to the Swaniff City fans, whom he hates passionately. One of the flares hits Pablo; John laughs and flees the scene. Pablo is eventually collected by an ambulance but due to the drivers careless driving, is involved in an accident. Another ambulance comes after a considerable amount of time and once at he arrives at the hospital, the staff is busy with another emergency hence not attending to Pablo immediately. Pablo loses a lot of blood and goes into shock.

    • Word count: 2511
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    Analysis of the law relating to the offence of Murder and relevant offences of Provocation, Diminished Responsibility and Intoxication.

    4 star(s)

    Once causation in fact is proved the second test of causation has to be satisfied. The second stage of the causation test is causation in law. Causation in law is that it was the act of the defendant that was the operative and substantial cause of the consequences. An act can be defined as the operative cause of the consequences if it has not 'exhausted its effect'.3 Substantial cause has been defined as something that does not fall within the 'de minimis' principle.4 However this can be misleading.

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    The Lindbergh kidnapping

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    The license plate belonged to a vehicle owned by Bruno Hauptmann, a German immigrant with a criminal record. Hauptmann was arrested the next day and charged with the murder. In February 1935, after a sensational, six-week trial, Hauptmann was found guilty of kidnapping and murdering the twenty-month-old son of Charles Lindbergh, Sr. Although circumstantial, the evidence against Hauptmann included over $14,000 dollars in ransom money found in his garage, a hand-made ladder used in the kidnapping - found to match wood and carpentry equipment located in his home, and expert testimony depicting handwriting similarities to that found on the ransom notes, left few to doubt his guilt.

    • Word count: 4406
  19. Marked by a teacher

    Why Do The Vast Majority Of Defendants Plead Guilty In Court?

    4 star(s)

    Securing guilty pleas are vital to the criminal courts because they save valuable time and money. For example, in a contested trail at the Crown Court the hearing usually takes about 10 hours, whereas it only takes approximately one hour if the plea is guilty. Research from the Home Office has shown that the cost at a Crown Court for a contested trial is around �12,088, in contrast to just �1,400 for a case with a guilty plea. (Sanders and Young, 2000). According to the rational choice theory, how a defendant pleads is dependant on two factors; how likely it is that they will be convicted, and the difference in penalty for a guilty plea and a not guilty plea.

    • Word count: 1618
  20. Marked by a teacher

    Criminal Law - A Miscarriage of Justice.

    4 star(s)

    What is Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (Hereafter SIDS)? What is 'The Prosecutors Fallacy'? What is Meadows Law? Within this essay I will address these issues and attempt to establish the true statistics involved in SIDS, state the most likely causes of death for the Clark babies, establish what the prosecution said in order for the jury be suspicious of Sally and try to deduce how important to the jury the flawed statistics used by the expert witnesses were. Two expert witnesses who the media widely reported at the time of Sally's trial were; Sir Roy Meadows and Dr Alan Williams, who were called to speak about SIDS.

    • Word count: 3887
  21. Marked by a teacher

    Antigone: "and Justice for all…"

    4 star(s)

    In Sophocles' Antigone this definition of justice is partially applied to both Creon and Antigone's state of affairs. On the one side, Creon gives his outlook on justice through his action of leaving the dead body of Polynices unburied. He believes that justice will be served in this manner to the so-called traitor for fighting against his city. However, on the opposing side is Antigone who believes justice will be served in another mode. Through a defiant act towards Creon, she buries her brother, Polynices, putting her idea of justice into play.

    • Word count: 1033
  22. Marked by a teacher

    Attempt to establish the relative advantages of both custodial and non-custodial sentencing in relation to punishing offenders in the United Kingdom.

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    ). Basically, punishment takes two forms in dealing with offenders in the United Kingdom. Custodial sentencing tends to generally be viewed as more punitive than non-custodial sentencing and remains a contentious debate as far as being an effective measure in reducing the likelihood of re-offending than the latter. Wilson claims most studies show that between 25 - 50% of offenders that are incarcerated, re-offend within one year of release (Wilson, 2000, pp. 113-115). Whilst there may be no hard evidence to suggest that non-custodial sentencing is anymore efficacious than custodial sentencing in reducing recidivism, it at least, at face value, offers a more purposeful, consequentialist form of punishment than the latter.

    • Word count: 2804
  23. Marked by a teacher

    The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS).

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    Once gaining all relevant evidence, they have the option of doing any of the following with the suspect. They can take no further action, they can give an informal warning or give a formal police caution or they can charge or summon the suspect. If the suspect has been charged or summoned they are now put into the formal criminal justice system. The police's role is now over and all the papers of the case are handed over to the crown prosecution service. It is now the job of the CPS to prosecute the defendant. Convicting someone who may possibly be innocent is a broad error that may occur whilst reviewing cases.

    • Word count: 2365
  24. Marked by a teacher

    Personalism-impact on victims and how Restorative justice conference can balance the interest of victims and the public.

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    Personalism-impact on victims and how Restorative justice conference can balance the interest of victims and the public Personalism-public interest oriented Traditionally, victims were left out of the justice process. Neither victims nor offenders had enough opportunities to tell their stories and feelings and to be heard. The state somehow stood in for the victim, which led to the offender seldom noticing that his or her actions would have impact on real and live people. In addition, as offenders were not supposed to express themselves, victims were left with stereotypes to fill their thoughts about offenders.

    • Word count: 8396
  25. Marked by a teacher

    Case Note - Stone & Dobinson 1977. The details contained in this case are very emotive and raise some important issues surrounding the issue of care and the duty owed to a person who is unable to care for themselves

    3 star(s)

    1. That by reason of such negligence the person died. It was suggested by Mr. Coles for the appellants that f***y cast a duty on her brother and Mrs. Dobinson because of the fact she became infirm and helpless. He said the appellants were entitled to do nothing leading into what he believed to be an analogous example, which was that, no duty would be cast upon a man to rescue a stranger from drowning, however easy such a rescue might be.[2] This was the first ground of appeal. The court quite rightly rejected that proposition on the basis that f***y was a blood relation, attempts were made by Mrs.

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Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • Critically assess the impact of the way in which media and politicians represented the murder of James Bulger by Venables and Thompson on youth justice policy and practise over the last ten years.

    "In conclusion I feel that the impact of the way the media and politicians represented the James Bulger case had a huge impact on youth justice policy over the last 10 years. The case shocked the country and called for change so that this would never happen again, the media by portraying youth society as it did had major influence on public feeling and on what should be done. Politicians have the power to impliment new policy such as the youth justice acts and so on. Together media and politicians had the most impact on the representation of the james bulger murder. I am in no way lessening the terrible violence that was committed by jon venables and robert thompson but i am concluded that if it hadn'' been for the media and political influence there might have been a very different outcome. Especislly the outcomes of youth justice policy and practise over the last 10 years."

  • Discuss the Strengths and the Weaknesses of conservative Criticisms of Liberal Democracy.

    "To conclude, there are some critical strengths that are found within the liberal democratic system, although due to their differences in beliefs and ideologies many more weaknesses were found. Many of these new principals were rejected by other loyal members of the Conservative Party. It was the idea behind the liberal thinking of radical change, and the break up of traditional values and ideologies. The conservatives as mentioned were much more a custom to the concept of gradual change."

  • Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of psychological (offender) profiling.

    "Conclusion Overall, although it is evident that without the co-operation of the victim in reporting crime, furnishing evidence, identifying the offender and acting as a witness in court, most crime would remain unknown and unpunished, victims had received very little recognition or attention until the last two decades. The last 2-3 decades have seen monumental measures to rectify this. However, it must be borne in mind that measures like the Victims Charter and other charters have no legal status and their role is 'perhaps best seen as a statement of interest rather than providing justifiable rights' (Fenwick, 1995). Also, the response in the UK to meeting the needs of victims has focused rather narrowly on providing support and services for the victim along with some financial compensation without endeavouring major changes in the judicial system. Thus, it is obvious that despite all the measures outlined, a lot more needs to be accomplished to strengthen the position of the victim in the Criminal Justice system in the UK."

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