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Flashcards in Accesorial Liability Deck (35):

Accessories & Abbetors Act 1861, s8

"Whosoever shall aid,abet,counsel or procure the commision of any indictable offence ... shall be liable to be tried, indicted and punished as a principal offender"
criticism by Law Com: Offences overlap a lot. simplification to assisting or encouraging)



S&S- S aids P by assiting, helping, or giving suport to P in the commision of a crime


J.C Smith

They must be of actual assistance: merely trying to help is not enough


Gogerly 1818

Assistance need not be substantial.If T acts as lookout for P during robbery, he is a party to the robberyeven should there be no need to give a warning.


Blakely v DPP [1991]

Assistance needn't take place at the scene of the offence


Larkins v. Police [1987]

Also Principal need not be aware of help



Dictionary definition: to incite by aid, to instigate, or to encourage.


A-G v Able [1984]

Abetting at common law only happens during the crime. While counselling is prior to the crime.
- Porviding information is sufficient.


Royce [1767]

The encouragement may be by words


Clarkson [1971]

Mere presence which does not by itself encourage is insufficient: "there must be an intention to encourage; and here must also be encouragement in fact"- Edmund Davies J


Coney [1882]

Sufficient that S part of group offering encouragement & that P is aware of the groups behaviour, albeit unaware of S's individual conduct. e.g attendance at an illegal prize fight= abetting battery by fighters.


Wilcox v. Jeffery [1951]

P must be aware of encouragement but it need not be shown that P was in any way be influenced by it.


Attorney-General's Reference (No 1 of 1975)- "to encourage"

Baker [1909]- includes the provision of advice or informaton ( such conduct could also amount to a&a e.g A-G Able[1984]-provided booklet w/ info on commiting suicide)
Calhaem [1985]- urging someone to commit an offence


Attorney-General's Reference (No 1 of 1975).

Lord Widgery CJ opined: "To procure means to produce by endeavour. You procure a thing by setting out to see that it happens and taking the appropriate steps to produce that happening".


Barton v Armstrong [1976]

S's conduct must in fact play somepartin influencing P.


Attorney-General's Reference (No 1 of 1975).

P may be entirely ignorant of S's role. Where an offence can be commited w/o MR, and the innocent agent doctrine does not apply. (e,g S laces P's drink P convicted of driving w/ excess alcohol-strict liability offence. S guilty of procuring the offence.


Calhaem [1985]

P must not only be aware of S's encouragement but must act in accordance w or within the scope of, the endrsememnt provided by S's encouragement.(E.G Kill them in the way specified, or the person intended)


A-g V.Able [1984]

-Will not work if P has forgotten the advice.
-no requirement that encouragement counselling "made a difference" (e.g if they would have tried to comit suicide anyway".


Webster [2006]

Person may be held liable as party for omitting to interfere & prevent offence when she has duty to do so and/or power of control over the principal or victim. Coupled with the present ability to intervene.


Du Cros v Lambourne [1907]

No need to show that S's no intervention actually assisted or encouraged.
Omission to intevene must occur at a time when S had requisite MR.


MR for Participation by assistance or encouragement

->S must intend his own contribution (aid,abett etc..)
->S must appreciate the nature of P's actions. Thatis, S must know or foresee the "essential matters" relating to P's actions which make those actions an offence.


S's own contribution

It does not matter if they didnt intend P's crime. But must have intended the action that facilitated P's crime. - Bryce [2004] National Coal Board v. Gamble [1959]
Recklessness is insufficent- Scott [1978]


For procurement

S must intend to help bring about about that P will commit the crime itself.



Duress - Fretwell [1862] (e.g threatning to kill oneself)
Necessity- Gillick [1986](e.g. giving contraceptinve to under 16.


P's Criminal conduct

Must have knowledge or foresight of essential matters- Johnso v. Youden[1950]


degree of knowledge

True belief - Saik[2006]
Suspicion is not enough- Webster [2006]


Antonelli [1905]

In case of willfull blindness S will be treated as having knowledge


Callow v Tillstone [1900] Bainbridge [1960]

Cannot be negligent belief/failure to to enuire the facts


Sufficiency of recklessnes

Law com- notwithsatanding dicta in Youden, whenever case has turned on the point of knowledge, rekclessness has been sufficient to convict the accesory.
Carter v Richardson [1974]- test was if S Kew it was "probable"
Bryce - "real or substantial risk"


S & S Crim law criticism of MR requirement

against seeming relaxation of knowledge into foresight. the required MR ought to to be strict in order to prevent over-criminalisation of conduct that does not itself cause a criminal har,.


Essential matters

-> type of offence intended (and eventually committed) by P - Bainbridge [1960]
-> That P would commit any one of the number of offences, the "list" of which includes the type of offence that was eventually commited. - Dpp for NI v. Maxwell [1978]


Bainbridge [1960]

Supplies oxygen cutting equipment. Knew it was for "illegal venture". This was deemed insufficent. knowledge.


Maxwell 1978

Drove car for Terrorist org, knowing that terorist attack was planned, but uncertain on how the attack would be perpertrated. Carried out by bomb. S found guilty as he coemplated range.


MR of Principle

S must foresee that P will do the A with the lvl of MR required for it to amount to anoffence- Cruse [1838]
S must forsee even ulterior intent- Maxwell [1978]


Strict liability

S need not forese consequencecs of P conduct. essential matters consist only of conduct(e.g. dangerous driving causing death) He will be liable of same consequences as P. Death= strict liability offence, not essential matter. Need not be foreseen by either P or S