Criminal Law: principles - Essay Example

Only on StudentShare

Extract of sample
Criminal Law: principles

The former is primarily concerned with the 'physical' aspect of criminal responsibility whereas the latter is concerned with the 'mental' aspect.
In understanding actus reus one must establish from the very beginning that it constitutes something much wider than just a criminal act. In some instances failure to act or omission constitute actus reus of an offence. It is usual that just a physical act is required to satisfy actus reus requirements. However, in certain circumstances must prevail and certain consequences must follow from the action/s of the accused.
In relation to statutory offences, such statutory provisions and decided cases that have interpreted them will indicate what constitutes the actus reus of a particular offence but may not necessarily indicate that whether or not liability can arise by means of an omission.
Accordingly a useful working definition of actus reus is that it comprises all the elements of the definition of the offence except those that relate to the mental element (mens rea) which is required on the part of the accused. (Allen, 1991, 18).
In understanding the term mens rea it is not easy to decide on the evidentiary criteria for something as hard to define as mental state of a given offender. They are physical control at the time the act took place. ...
Download paper


Imagine that you have been asked to write a lecture. Your audience will be people of average intelligence, but with no specialist knowledge of the law or legal system. Your objectives are to ensure that your audience understands:-
This paper looks at the fundamental concepts and principles of the system of criminal law…
Author : jeromeferry

Related Essays

Criminal Law: moral [principles
It is necessarily a selfish principle, one that negates individual rights and demands sacrifice from its members. It views morality from an experiential perspective, not from the light of faith and enlightenment, and adopts the utilitarian principle in the determination of right and wrong....
8 pages (2008 words) Essay
Law tells us what is right, while ethics is not so categorical and definite in its approach. The opinion was also supported by Maitland in connection to the British law(Pollock and Maitland, History of English law, vol.2). Miller defines crime " to be the commission or the omission of an act which the law forbids or commands under pain of a punishment to be imposed by the state by a proceeding in its own name"( Miller, Criminal Law, p.15 ). The basis of criminal law is that there are certain standards of behaviour of moral principles which society requires to be observed (Devlin P. 1965, The...
8 pages (2008 words) Essay
Criminal Law Case Report
She therefore initiated a legal action in order to challenge the constitutionality of the criminal abortion laws in Texas....
3 pages (753 words) Essay
Criminal Law and Criminology
As may be inferred from the above stated, the subjectivism/objectivism debate effectively mirrors the existent tension between the principles of deed and equal culpability. The objectivist camp believes that criminal liability should be limited to what the person actually did, while the subjectivist camp upholds the expansion of criminal liability towards the embrace of the person's state of mind. Accordingly, the objectivist camp upholds the principle of deeds and the subjectivist camp that of equal culpability.3 The complex nature of prevailing criminal law lies it that it is neither one nor...
4 pages (1004 words) Essay
civil and criminal law
To gain a better insight, these questions can be looked at from two angles as proposed by Ronald Standler: Punishment and Burden of Proof (Standler, 1998)....
2 pages (502 words) Essay
Criminal Law: defences
This strict rule was based on the view that it is not in the public interest that people should try to cause, or should cause, each other actual bodily harm for no good reason. The Court of Appeal's views were applied the House of Lords in R v Brown and Others (2)....
6 pages (1506 words) Essay
Got a tricky question? Receive an answer from students like you! Try us!