1 / 26

Mens Rea- 3

Mens Rea- 3. Criminal A2 Mrs Howe. Mens Rea. Mens Rea is the mental element of an offence. All offences must have an actus reus and a mens rea unless it is an offence of strict liability. There are different levels of Mens Rea required for different offences

Télécharger la présentation

Mens Rea- 3

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author. Content is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use only. Download presentation by click this link. While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server. During download, if you can't get a presentation, the file might be deleted by the publisher.


Presentation Transcript

  1. Mens Rea- 3 Criminal A2 Mrs Howe

  2. Mens Rea Mens Rea is the mental element of an offence. All offences must have an actus reus and a mens rea unless it is an offence of strict liability. There are different levels of Mens Rea required for different offences To be guilty D must have the minimum level of intention. Specific intention- highest level Recklessness Negligence

  3. Intention In Mohan 1975 intention was defined as “a decision to bring about, in so far as it lies within the accused power( the prohibited consequence), no matter whether the accused desired that consequence of his act or not”. This makes it clear that the motive or reason for doing something is not relevant. Most intend to cause consequence.

  4. Direct and oblique intent In most cases the D has what is known as direct intent. But can be situations where the D intends one thing and the actual consequence which occurs is something else e.g Hankcock and Shankland 1986 The D intended to frighten someone to stop him going to work (miners strike) actual consequence driver taking man to work was killed

  5. D wants to stop V’s car, so pushes a concrete block from a bridge onto the roadway Oblique Intent Direct Intent Driver of car is hit by concrete and killed. Not the intended result Concrete hits road and forces car to stop

  6. Foresight of Consequences • Main problem is proving intention. • Especially where D intended something else. • If can show that in achieving intended thing D foresaw that he would also cause those consequences then could be found G

  7. Recklessness • Subjective Test- what was in the D mind • R V Cunningham 1957 • Objective what would be in an ordinary persons mind • MPC v Caldwell 1982

  8. Gross Negligence • Lack of Concern to the possibility of obvious injury • Foresight of the risk but a resolve to still run that risk • Foresight of the risk coupled with a weak attempt to avoid it that still amounts to high degree of negligent behaviour • Inattention to an important matter that relates to the defendants duty of care. • All left for jury to decide R V Adomako 1994

  9. Transferred Malice D can be guilty if he intended to commit a similar offence but against a different V. e.g. aim to hit person A but hit person B still have Actus reus and Mens rea so offence committed Where the mens rea is for a different type of offence then the D may not be guilty. Pembliton 1874 Fight, stone, pub window, NG MR assault AR criminal damage

  10. Coincidence of Actus Reus and Mens Rea Actus Reus and Mens Rea must be present at the same time for an offence to have been committed. e.g. If you intend to go round and assault your neighbour but when you get there you change your mind no offence is committed even though you had the mens rea. If however an hour later you reverse your car and knock your neighbour over, whilst you have the Actus reus for assault you would not have the mens rea to be G of an offence. Thabo Meli V R 1954

  11. Mens rea- Mental Element- Intention, Desire, Motive Direct Intention D achieves desired result. Oblique Intention Something else happened as a result of act. If can show Foresight of consequence can be G What did the D want to happen Reason for doing act- not relevant for Mens Rea Direct Intention Test How probable was the consequence which resulted from D voluntary act Did D foresee that consequence Direct Intention

  12. Mens Rea mental act D Intention Direct Intention Oblique Intention Intend one thing get another Motive N/a Foresight of consequences Occur at same time or during Actus Reus Lower level Mens Rea Objective Test – what was in ordinary persons mind Recklessness Lack of concern Foresight and still took risk Foresight and weak attempt to avoid it Inattention to duty Subjective Test – what was in D mind Gross Negligence Intention for one person can be transferred to someone else Transferred Malice

  13. Continuing Act • Where there is a continuing act for the Actus Reus and at some time while that act is on going the D has the required Mens rea then the two do coincide and D will be guilty • Has the required Mens Rea and Actus Reus for offence to be committed

  14. Hancock and Shankland 1986 • Two D’s attempting to intimidate a fellow worker during a strike threw a concrete block from a bridge onto the victims passing car, killing the victim. The court focused on the probability of the consequence when using it as evidence to decide intent

  15. Nedrick 1986 • The D poured petrol through the letterbox of a house to frighten a woman who was living there. The result was the death of a child. From this particular case two questions emerged, which it was hoped would help clarify the intent:- • Was the result a virtual certainty of the action • Did the D realise that the result would be a virtual certainty of the action. Unless the jury was happy that the answer to both questions was yes they could not assume the D intention

  16. Woollin 1998 • D threw his three month old baby at his pram. The baby missed the pram and crashed into the wall, dying of his injuries. The courts were not happy with the two questions used in Nedrick case but still warned the jury to find intention but only if they thought the result was a virtual certainty from the actions of the D and that they knew this to be the case.

  17. Mathews and Alleyne 2003 • The D’s dropped the victim 25 feet from a bridge, into the middle of deep river. The victim had told them that he could not swim. They watched him dog paddle towards the bank but left before seeing if he reached the bank. V drowned • Foresight of consequence is not intention

  18. Maloney 1985 • D shot and killed his step father in a game that went tragically wrong. Both were drunk and trying to decide who had the fastest draw. It was decided by the court that foresight of consequence was only evidence that could be used to decide intent, it did not prove intent

  19. Task Create a timeline to show the cases which have developed the Law on Mens Rea Add brief details to show the points of law each case made

  20. Task Create a table to show the main cases with regard to Mens Rea Case law Quality Criteria List all the relevant cases, brief facts of each case and the law the case created/defined

  21. Task Highlight the main differences between subjective and objective recklessness using the subjective and objective test Use three of your own examples to illustrate your answer. What are the problems with using such tests.

  22. Questions • Describe mens rea • What is the relationship between mens rea and actus reus? • What are specific intent, direct intent and oblique intent? • What is subjective and objective recklessness? • How do the cases of R v Cunningham 1957 and MPC V Caldwell 1982 illustrate subjective and objective recklessness? • Give three examples of gross negligence • Who decides whether an offence constitutes gross negligence? • What is transferred malice? • What does the case of Fagan V Metropolitan Police commissioner 1968 show about the coincidence of mens rea and actus reus? source Jimmy O Riordan Law for OCR, Heinemann, 2003

  23. Exam Question • Comment on the importance of mens rea to criminal offences. How do the courts examine this concept? 50 marks

  24. Scenario Questions • Police stop a car and search the car. During the search police find small packets of cannabis. When they question the owner he thought was illegally importing money into the UK. At the time this was not an offence . • Has the D committed an offence? • If so what offence? • What Mens Rea would be required in this case? No No mens rea for importing cannabis even though an actus reus, so no offence R V Taaffe 1983

  25. Scenario Questions • Police officer sees D driving erratically, he signals for the driver to pull over. The driver pulls over and parks the tyre on the Police officers foot. D was asked to move the car and tells the police officer he will do it later. He was asked to move it again. When questioned the D said he had done this accidentally and no intention of doing it nor done this recklessly. • Has the D committed an offence? • What would CPS have to be prove? Yes. Although no intention to park car on PO foot by refusing to remove it he intended to leave it there. Then had the MR for the offence. That he had the mens rea and actus reus for the offence of parking the car on PO foot. Fagan V Metropolitan Police Commissioner 1968

  26. Coincidence of Actus Reus and Mens Rea Mens Rea and Actus Reus have to be present at the same time In Thabo Meli V R 1954 • D’s attacked man • believed they had killed him. • Pushed body over cliff • Was alive after attack • Died later of hypothermia Mens Rea and Actus Reus were combined in a series of acts Mens Rea can occur where D continues and act. Fagan V Metropolitan Police Commissioner 1986

More Related