Principles of Criminal Liability

The following topics form part of the Criminal Law Unit at A2.

Actus reus

General principles of proof of positive acts before liability may be incurred; omissions as actus reus in certain duty situations; principles of causation; ‘sine qua non’; factors affecting the chain of causation.

Mens rea

General principles of intention; direct intent; oblique intent; specific intent; recklessness; foresight of consequences; transferred malice.

Strict liability

Principles of strict/absolute liability; statutory nature; interpretation by courts; policy issues; social utility; no negligence – due diligence defences.


© OCR 2013


Principles of Criminal Liability - OCR: Unit G153 - Criminal Law (OCR AS/A2 English & Welsh Law 2013) by Richard W M Priestley (25 Mar 2013) - Kindle eBook

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