Arson CIB 012 - updated July 2017 Flashcards
Simester and Brookbanks
Knowing means “knowing or correctly believing” … the defendant may believe something wrongly, but cannot “know” something that is false.
R v Harney
Recklessness involves foresight of dangerous consequences that could well happen, together with an intention to continue the course of conduct regardless of the risk.
Case law used to define damages by fire.
R v Archer
Property may be damaged if it suffers permanent or temporary physical harm or permanent or temporary impairment of its use or value.
s2, CA 1961
Property includes real and personal property, and any estate or interest in any real or personal property, [money, electricity,] and any debt, and any thing in action, and any other right or interest.
Define ‘life’. Consider what life is NOT.
Life in this context means human life, and the danger must be to the life of someone other than the defendant.[Does not include animal life, and cannot be the life of the defendant himself]
Define claim of right.
s2, CA 1961
Claim of right, in relation to any act, means a belief at the time of the act in a proprietary or possessory right in property in relation to which the offence is alleged to have been committed, although that belief may be based on ignorance or mistake of fact or of any matter of law other than the enactment against which the offence is alleged to have been committed.
Gender neutral. Proven by judicial notice or circumstantial evidence.
s217, CA 1961
Obtain or retain for himself or herself or for any other person.
s267(4), CA 1961
Any benefit, pecuniary advantage, privilege, property, service, or valuable consideration.
R v Morley
Loss…is assessed by the extent to which the complainant’s position prior to the offence has been diminished or impaired.
List three examples of circumstantial evidence from which an offender’s intent may be inferred.
- offender’s actions and words before and after event
- surrounding circumstances
- nature of the act itself
Discuss the process which produces fire.
Fire is the result of the process of combustion, a chemical reaction between fuel and oxygen, triggered by heat.
s2, Arms Act 1983
Any substance or mixture or combination of substances which in its normal state is capable either of decomposition at such a rapid rate as to result in an explosion or of producing a pyrotechnic effect.
Includes: gun powder, gelignite, detonators
Does not include: firearms, fireworks[, molotof cocktail]
Discuss the subjective/objective test in relation to knowledge in 267(1)(a).
Subjective test: What was the defendant thinking at the time? Did the defendant know that human life was likely to be endangered by his actions?
Objective test: What would a reasonable person have thought in the same circumstances? Would a reasonable person have recognised the risk?
Outline the circumstances and findings of the key case law in regards to INTEREST in property.
In R v Wilson defendant was attempting to manufacture methamphetamine at his rented property. The clan lab ignited and the house burned down. In addition to drugs charges, Wilson was charged with recklessly damagin the house by fire under s267(1)(b).
Court of Appeal ruled that he could not be convicted of arson as his tenancy of property was an interest in that property and therefore provided him with a defence.
Outline the legislation in regards to Attempted Arson.
s268, Crimes Act 1961
Everyone is liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 10 years who attempts to commit arson in respect of any immovable property or any vehicle, ship, or aircraft.
What are the two elements to be proved for attempted arson?
- intent to commit the offence
- a real and substantial step towards achieving that aim
Outline the legislative definition of Attempts.
s72(1), Crimes Act 1961
Everyone who, having an intent to commit an offence, does or omits an act for the purpose of accomplishing his object, is guilty of an attempt to commit the offence intended, whether in the circumstances it was possible to commit the offence or not.