In English criminal law, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant committed the offence with the requisite state of mind (mens rea). Mens rea can be considered to be the ‘degree of blameworthiness’ and the concept of intention is the most blameworthy state of mind. According to Glanville Williams, intention ‘does not need a definition since everybody knows what it means’. In ordinary language, intention means purpose or aim, as everybody knows it. But, the core meaning of intention is fairly straightforward and hence ‘Intention cannot be satisfactorily defined.’ The meaning of intention has caused problems for the courts especially on cases which lied on the borderline of intention and recklessness. The basic definition according to Robert Walker LJ in the civil case of Re A is ‘purpose’. The definition in Mohan could be described as commonsense definition. The ordinary meaning of intention so far is used in the majority of cases. The judges need not to define intention and the jury should use their common sense in determining its meaning. However, in ‘rare’ and ‘exceptional’ cases, the judge should have to give further explanation to the jury on intention to avoid misunderstanding. The jurors are entitled to find intention if a result was virtually certain and the defendant realized it was virtually certain to
In this essay it is my intention to evaluate by means of a critical analysis the mens rae of murder.
CRITICALLY EVALUATE THE MENS REA OF MURDER INTRODUCTION In this essay it is my intention to evaluate by means of a critical analysis the mens rae of murder. In order to try and do this one has to explain what murder and mens rae are and how they work in a criminal context. THE LAW Back in the 1800’s Lord Chief Justice Cockburn, described mens rae and intention, - If a man did an act, more especially if that were an illegal act, although its immediate purpose might not be to take life, yet if it were such that life was necessarily endangered by it, - if a man did such an act, not with the purpose of taking life, but with the knowledge or belief that life was likely to be sacrificed by it, that was not only murder by the law of England, but by the law of probably every other country. Lord Cook’s classic definition states: "Murder is when a man of sound memory and of the age of discretion, unlawfully killeth within any county of the realm any reasonable creature in rerum natura under the king's peace, with malice aforethought, either expressed by the party or implied by law. Previously the victim had to die a year and a day from the date of the offence, but relatively recent legislation has now changed that. The difference between murder and manslaughter is the state of the persons mind and their intention to kill or cause grievous bodily harm at the time of the
William Pearson Assignment 2: 'The actions of Nellie Hall a local Birmingham Suffragette 3) What has happened to Nellie Hall? Source d is a letter from prison; this shows that she has been sent there for a crime. So before this letter has been sent I can assume that she has committed a crime, been arrested, has had a trial in court then finally been sent to prison. The letter itself is unusual, it is a set printed letter where she can fill in space but it also has an extra comment at the bottom written by Nellie Hall. It was sent on 23rd July 1913, saying that she was in good health. Her statement at the bottom has several interesting parts to it. "I think that I might be allowed to have a letter from you." This suggests that she not only would like a letter but also really wants her family to write back to her in prison. It is not only addressed to her family but she also has added the word, 'all' which suggests she would like her suffragette friends to see the letter aswell. It also says: "I have 21 days 2nd division" This is where she is situated in the prison according to her crime. 2nd division is for political crimes showing she has done something against the government, which is common for a suffragette. It says she has 21 days, the length of her sentence, but she goes on to say that she hopes to be out soon. "I am not taking food and water. I hope to
Court of Appeal (Criminal Division) Regina v B.T.  Lord Justice Malin, Mr Justice Stevens and Mr Justice Coughlin The defendant, E, a boy aged 12 at the time of the offence, was charged with sexually assaulting his cousin, a 16 year old girl contrary to section 5 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. On 26th February 2004, the appellant was convicted of sexual assault contrary to clause 2 of the Sexual Offences Bill 2003. He appeals against this judgement with the leave of the Full Court. APPEAL from the Crown Court The facts are stated in the opinion of Lord Justice Malin. This is an appeal from the judgement of Heaton J which sets out with care the background to the application and his findings thereon. I will start this judgement by setting out what he said. He said this: "On 16th January 2004 the applicant was accused of sexually assaulting his cousin. The circumstances of this assault were as follows; the appellant, aged 12 years at the time of the assault, is an orphan who attends an all-boys preparatory school run by a strict religious sect and spends the school holidays with his aunt, uncle and cousin F, who is 16 years old. He found a book called "The Joy of Sex" and was intrigued by the anatomical differences between men and women which are shown in the book." "After looking at the pictures in this book, he lifted the skirt of his sleeping cousin and
Provocation Essay For a person to be criminally liable they must be commit the relevant prohibited act, or omission; the actus reus, and also be in the requisite mental state; mens rea, and also have no valid defence. Defences available cover situations such as insanity, duress or intoxication. However the Courts have accepted that there are situations in which a defendant has committed the relevant actus reus for murder, and also displayed thee relevant mens rea, and does not have a reasonable defence, however in the interests of giving the judges discretion and avoiding the mandatory life sentence dictated by a verdict of murder, the Courts have prepared to accept a series of partial defences to murder. The mandatory life sentence is often seen as unfair, as it does not allow for the circumstances of the case, and can often lead to juries returning 'not guilty' verdicts, in particularly emotional cases where they do not believe the defendant qualifies as 'murderer'. The defences introduced are considered special defences, in that they are only available to defendants charged with murder, and are also partial defences in that they do not completely absolve the defendant from liability; but instead allow a verdict of manslaughter. It has been suggested that as many as 45 percent of killings are committed by people who lose their temper. The partial defence of provocation has
Central to the general idea of the Rule of Law is the specific intention that it involves the rule of the law rather than the rule of the people. Judges hold a position of central importance in the relation to the concept of the Rule of Law. They are expected to deliver judgment in a completely impartial manner through a strict application of the law, without allowing their personal preference, or favour to any party of the action in their decision1. Nevertheless, decisions in the criminal process system often involve conflicts; the best framework to analysis the criminal justice system is the work of Herbert Packer, developed in the 1960s.2 Packer suggested that there were two models of evaluation, the Crime Control and the Due Process model. The Crime Control system is based on the suggestion that the criminal conduct is the prime function. This calls for 'a high rate of apprehension and conviction', placing a 'premium on speed and finality', and it therefore presents a minimal opportunity for challenge. To work effectively the Crime Control model should ensure that only the strong cases are taken forward to conviction and sentence as expeditiously as possible. Packer contrasts this with the Due Process model which takes the view that the stigma and loss of liberty might fall on the defendant, therefore insists on fairness criteria and other protections for the
Telemez 1 Özkan Bugra TELEMEZ 20300347 PHIL241.09 International Relations Instructor:Sandrine BERGES Deadline: 04-01-2005 Justice is the quality of being just or fair and in other words, a reference to the fairness and legality in the way people are treated by others. Several philosophers tried to find the definition of justice and approached different answers. Likewise, St. Thomas Aquinas had tried to explain what justice is and whether it is about passions, or about operations. He considered justice as a virtue, moreover, it is a general virtue and chief of the moral virtues. This essay discusses whether justice is concerned with actions or emotions and is it different from other virtues. Justice is concerned with actions, not passions and it is the most important virtue. I am going to prove it with refer to Aquinas' "Summa Theologica" 's Articulus 1, 3, 5, 9, 12 and give some actual examples to support his ideas. Justice is rendering to each one his right. Aquinas claims that "justice is a habit according to which someone has a constant and perpetual will to render to each his rights" (p.170) formed through actions and experience. He supports his ideas with Aristotle's words "justice is a habit whereby a man is said to be capable of doing just actions in accordance with his choice."(Ethic. v , 5). Telemez 2 A human virtue is one which renders a human act and man