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Chapter

Cover Ashworth's Principles of Criminal Law

6. Criminal Capacity, Mens Rea, and Fault  

This chapter deals first with another fundamental requirement of a crime: criminal capacity. It is a precondition of criminal liability that the defendant is a person with sufficient capacity to be held responsible. This leads to an examination of infancy and insanity as barriers to criminal responsibility, and then to a consideration of special factors affecting corporate criminal liability. Second, this chapter considers fault requirements as an element of criminal offences. It explores some of the reasons for and against the criminal law requiring proof of fault in any form. It also considers principal varieties of fault requirement in the criminal law, such as intention and recklessness.

Chapter

Cover Cassese's International Criminal Law

13. Obedience to superior orders and official capacity  

Antonio Cassese, Paola Gaeta, Laurel Baig, Mary Fan, Christopher Gosnell, and Alex Whiting

Individuals who committed international crimes were once able to rely on the expansive doctrines of superior orders, or acting in an official capacity, to excuse their liability. These doctrines, at least in their widest versions, were firmly repudiated in the London Charter. This chapter discusses the two circumstances where superior orders may still have some vitality as an excuse: mistake of law or duress. The overall position appears to be, however, that there is now little scope for mistake of law even in respect to superior orders, and that while duress certainly is a well-founded defence in principle, it is very rarely accepted in practice. Mistake of fact involves a different issue: non-awareness of certain facts that show the absence of mens rea. Superior orders may indeed be the source of such misleading information, but then the proper claim is properly the absence of mens rea that negates criminal liability, not excuse.

Chapter

Cover Criminology

14. Intelligence, mental disorder and crime  

This chapter presents the concept of mental disorder, in contrast to the possible physiological influences in criminal behaviour. The idea behind the concept is that the underlying causes are not physical in nature, but are due to the workings of the ‘mind’. The chapter begins with a consideration of whether differences in individuals’ cognitive capacity—or, as it is usually called, intelligence—can have any bearing on the likelihood of their acting in an antisocial manner. It also discusses the definition of ‘learning disability’, a legal classification defined as a state of arrested or incomplete development of the mind, which includes significant impairment of intelligence and social functioning.

Chapter

Cover Sealy & Worthington's Text, Cases, and Materials in Company Law

3. Corporate Activity and Legal Liability  

This chapter discusses how the company acts as a legal person. It covers: contractual liability; corporate capacity; agency and authority in corporate contracting; contracts and the execution of documents; pre-incorporation contracts; corporate gifts; tort liability; criminal liability; whether and in what circumstances knowledge should be imputed to a company or other corporate body; and when attribution can be denied by the company.

Chapter

Cover Sealy & Worthington's Text, Cases, and Materials in Company Law

4. Shareholders as an Organ of the Company  

This chapter discusses how the company acts as a legal person. It covers: contractual liability; corporate capacity; agency and authority in corporate contracting; contracts and the execution of documents; pre-incorporation contracts; corporate gifts; tort liability; criminal liability; whether and in what circumstances knowledge should be imputed to a company or other corporate body; and when attribution can be denied by the company.

Book

Cover Criminal Law

Michael Allen and Ian Edwards

Course-focused and comprehensive, the Textbook on series provides an accessible overview of the key areas on the law curriculum. Textbook on Criminal Law has been providing students of criminal law with a readable and reliable introduction to the subject for the past 30 years. This is the sixteenth edition, which has been updated to include all of the latest case law and statutory changes. Topics covered include actus reus, mens rea, negligence and strict liability, and capacity and incapacitating conditions. It also examines general defences, parties to crime, inchoate offences, and homicide. Towards the end of the book chapters consider non-fatal offences, sexual offences, offences under the Theft Acts 1968 and 1978, fraud, and criminal damage.