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Compare and contrast intention and recklessness as fault terms governing criminal liability Compare and contrast Intention and recklessness as fault terms governing criminal liability To be guilty of a crime, it is usually expected that the defendant has the necessary mens rea or guilty mind, subject to cases of strict liability.
The level of mens rea required varies for different crimes, to find the mens rea one must look at the specific definition of a crime. For the purpose of this essay I will first look at Intention and Recklessness and then compare the two as fault terms governing criminal liability.
The meaning of intention in criminal law is as of yet disconcerted, however, the Law Commission of the draft Criminal law Bill clause 1 a attempts to provide a definition: A person acts intentionally with respect to a result when: It is his purpose to cause it; or II. Although it is not his purpose to cause it, he knows that it would occur in the ordinary course of events if he were to succeed in some other purpose of causing some other result.
The motive behind such intention is not intention itself but is used as evidence in proving that intention exists. Direct intent has to be proven for cases such as murder and GBH with intent Oblique intention Otherwise known as foresight of consequences, is a rather delicate subject for discussion.
The difficulty in its explanation rises because; a defendant does not desire the consequence, his aim is something else, but his actions have the effect of making the consequence happen. The definition of oblique intention has been disturbed on many occasions, so to be able to understand the current definition of oblique intention it is necessary to look at the previous cases which have helped develop the law regarding oblique intent.
At one time DPP v Smith  was authority for the view, that a person foresaw and intended the natural and probable consequences of his act, but s.
In Moloney it was decided that foresight of consequences was only evidence from which intention could be inferred. Lord Bridge composed a two part test as to which the jury should be directed upon on the offence of murder: Did the defendant foresee that consequence as being a natural consequence of his act?
In the case of Hancock and Shankland  it was stressed that the probability of the consequence occurring is important in deciding if there is evidence from which to infer intention.
But their conviction was quashed because it was entirely up to the jury to decide what degree of foresight is required for an inference of intention. Did the defendant foresee that act? Then, if the consequence was a virtual certainty and the jury were sure that the defendant foresaw it as being so, there would be evidence from which the jury could infer intention In the most recent case regarding oblique intent, Woolin  to an extent upheld the decision in Nedrick.
In Woolin, the defendant was charged with murder and the judge directed the jury in accordance with the Nedrick guidelines, the house of Lords did not like the two questions in Nedrick, but agreed that the jury should be told that they are not entitled to find the necessary intention unless, 1 they feel sure that the consequence was a virtual certainty and 2 the defendant appreciated that such was the case.
As of today this is how the law stands, though the courts do not follow it slavishly they are nevertheless good guidelines.
So now we can say that intention is either Direct, where the defendant has the desire to bring about that consequence, or oblique, where the defendant has knowledge that the consequence is virtually certain if things go according to plan. Recklessness The law on recklessness is not any more coherent then that of intention.Recklessness means the person knew (or should have known) You can have an experienced law firm evaluate the merits of your claim for free right here.
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Feb 05, · Judges have a tough job. Even before entering the courtroom, these defenders of justice face many years of education and training. When presiding over cases, they’re responsible for assessing the evidence and interpreting the law, all the while maintaining complete impartiality.
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