Chapter 10 Interactive key cases

A supplied P with oxyacetylene cutting equipment. A admitted he foresaw P doing something illegal but denied knowledge of the precise details. The equipment was used to break into a bank.

The Court of Appeal dismissed A’s appeal against conviction for being an accessory. It is not enough to show that A knows that some illegal venture is intended; however, where A knows that a crime of the type in question was intended and does an act intending to assist a crime of the type later committed, A may be convicted as an accessory to the crime.

D and four others were driving around planning to run over V. Two of the group (not including D) ran out of the car and killed V with a metal bar.

Although the method of killing was different from that intended, D had intended to help the killing of V and his acts had been of assistance in that killing.

A was convicted of the murder of V, who was stabbed to death by P, who pleaded guilty to murder. Jogee had been with P during the evening of the killing and told P to ‘do something’ to V. P stabbed V with a knife he found in the kitchen.

The Supreme Court held that the current law—where the mens rea of an accomplice only required that he or she foresaw the principal might kill—was incorrect. It had to be shown that the accomplice intended to assist or encourage the principal in the commission of the offence, with any mens rea required for the full offence.

D was driving a car when his passengers got out and attacked V.

D claimed he was doing nothing to help the commission of the crime. However it was held that being present at the scene, ready to help as necessary, was sufficient to make him an accomplice.

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