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Chapter

Cover Criminal Law Directions

6. Involuntary manslaughter  

Without assuming prior legal knowledge, books in the Directions series introduce and guide readers through key points of law and legal debate. Questions, diagrams, and exercises help readers to engage fully with each subject and check their understanding as they progress. This chapter explores the main types of involuntary manslaughter: unlawful act manslaughter, gross negligence manslaughter, and reckless manslaughter, as well as the offence of corporate manslaughter. Unlawful act manslaughter arises where the defendant intentionally commits an unlawful act which a reasonable person would recognise exposes the victim to the risk of some harm and the victim dies as a result. Gross negligence manslaughter arises where the defendant causes the death of the victim through the breach of a duty of care owed to that victim.

Chapter

Cover Smith, Hogan, and Ormerod's Criminal Law

14. Involuntary manslaughter  

David Ormerod and Karl Laird

This chapter explores involuntary manslaughter in its three forms: unlawful act manslaughter, gross negligence manslaughter and reckless manslaughter. Given the breadth of cases that involuntary manslaughter must cover, it is not surprising that more than one form of the offence has evolved, and that the elements of each form of involuntary manslaughter are distinct, particularly as to the fault required. The chapter examines recent developments, in particular those relating to gross negligence manslaughter and whether the offence is contrary to Art 7 of the European Convention on Human Rights. It concludes with a detailed assessment of the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act 2007.

Chapter

Cover Criminal Law Concentrate

8. Homicide II  

Each Concentrate revision guide is packed with essential information, key cases, revision tips, exam Q&As, and more. Concentrates show you what to expect in a law exam, what examiners are looking for, and how to achieve extra marks. An unlawful homicide committed without the mens rea for murder is involuntary manslaughter. This chapter discusses the three classes of involuntary manslaughter: reckless manslaughter; unlawful act manslaughter; and gross negligence manslaughter. Both unlawful act manslaughter and gross negligence are notable for the low level of mens rea required. Indeed, with gross negligence manslaughter the defendant may not even have foreseen the risk of death and yet may still be convicted of manslaughter.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Adomako [1995] AC 171, House of Lords  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Adomako [1995] AC 171, House of Lords. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Woollin [1999] 1 AC 82, House of Lords  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Woollin [1999] 1 AC 82, House of Lords. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Adomako [1995] AC 171, House of Lords  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Adomako [1995] AC 171, House of Lords. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Woollin [1999] 1 AC 82, House of Lords  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Woollin [1999] 1 AC 82, House of Lords. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Smith, Hogan and Ormerod's Essentials of Criminal Law

6. Manslaughter  

David Ormerod and John Child

This chapter focuses on manslaughter, a common law homicide offence with an actus reus of unlawful conduct causing death. The chapter considers two categories of manslaughter: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter. Voluntary manslaughter arises where D commits murder, but meets the criteria for one of the partial defences: loss of self-control, diminished responsibility, or suicide pact. Involuntary manslaughter arises where D does not commit murder, but commits a relevant manslaughter offence: unlawful act manslaughter, gross negligence manslaughter, or reckless manslaughter. The chapter explains statutory offences of unlawful killing (corporate manslaughter, driving causing death, infanticide, killing of a foetus) and concludes by outlining options for legal reform concerning voluntary manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, and the structure of manslaughter offences. Relevant cases are highlighted with a summary of the main facts and judgments.

Chapter

Cover Complete Criminal Law

4. Murder and voluntary manslaughter  

This chapter examines homicide law in England and Wales, focusing on murder and voluntary manslaughter. The chapter discusses the sentence for murder under the Criminal Justice Act 2003 and comments on the justification for the mandatory life sentence. It also reviews the most recent proposals for reform of murder and the mandatory sentence, and analyses court decisions in relevant cases. Voluntary manslaughter requires the actus reus and mens rea for murder but must also have a partial defence, such as loss of control or diminished responsibility as well as that of suicide pact under the Homicide Act 1957.

Chapter

Cover Complete Criminal Law

5. Involuntary and corporate manslaughter  

This chapter examines the provisions of criminal law for involuntary manslaughter in England and Wales, explaining that involuntary manslaughter may be caused by recklessness, gross negligence, or unlawful and dangerous acts. It considers other homicide-related offences such as infanticide and causing death by dangerous, careless, or inconsiderate driving, and analyses court decisions in several cases. The chapter explains the principle of corporate liability, highlighting problems in prosecuting a corporation for a serious crime, and explains the key provisions of the Corporate Manslaughter and Corporate Homicide Act (CMCHA) 2007 in England and Wales. It also provides several examples of relevant cases and analyses the bases of court decisions in each of them.

Chapter

Cover Criminal Law

9. Homicide  

Michael J. Allen and Ian Edwards

Course-focused and contextual, Criminal Law provides a succinct overview of the key areas on the law curriculum balanced with thought-provoking contextual discussion. This chapter discusses offences of homicide: murder and manslaughter. Murder is unlawful homicide committed with ‘malice aforethought’, the penalty being life imprisonment. Manslaughter generally covers all unlawful homicides which are not murder. The punishment for this offence is in the discretion of the court. Manslaughter may be divided into voluntary and involuntary manslaughter. Voluntary manslaughter arises where the accused has committed murder but circumstances of excuse or justification, either diminished responsibility or loss of self-control, are present, reducing his culpability. The chapter analyses the scope of these defences, situating them in the context of the abolition in 2009 of the provocation defence. Involuntary manslaughter is an unlawful killing where the accused lacked malice aforethought but otherwise had a state of mind which the law treats as culpable. Unlawful act manslaughter covers situations where a person has unlawfully killed as a result of committing an unlawful act, such as a punch. Gross negligence manslaughter covers situations where a person has unlawfully killed as a result of a gross breach of a duty of care owed to the victim. One of the chapter’s ‘The law in context’ features examines the sentencing for homicide offences in light of new guidelines from the Sentencing Council. A new ‘The law in context’ feature analyses the relevance of domestic abuse for the defences available to a woman charged with murdering her abusive partner.

Chapter

Cover Smith, Hogan, and Ormerod's Essentials of Criminal Law

6. Manslaughter  

This chapter focuses on manslaughter, a common law homicide offence with an actus reus of unlawful conduct causing death. The chapter considers two categories of manslaughter: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter. Voluntary manslaughter arises where D commits murder, but meets the criteria for one of the partial defences: loss of self-control, diminished responsibility, or suicide pact. Involuntary manslaughter arises where D does not commit murder, but commits a relevant manslaughter offence: unlawful act manslaughter, gross negligence manslaughter, or reckless manslaughter. The chapter explains statutory offences of unlawful killing (corporate manslaughter, driving causing death, infanticide, killing of a foetus) and concludes by outlining options for legal reform concerning voluntary manslaughter, involuntary manslaughter, and the structure of manslaughter offences. Relevant cases are highlighted with a summary of the main facts and judgment.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Wallace [2019] EWCA Crim 690, Court of Appeal  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Wallace [2019] EWCA Crim 690, Court of Appeal. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R (Conway) v Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWCA Civ 275, Court of Appeal  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R (Conway) v Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWCA Civ 275, Court of Appeal. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Kuddus [2019] EWCA Crim 837, Court of Appeal  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Kuddus [2019] EWCA Crim 837, Court of Appeal. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R (Nicklinson) v Ministry of Justice [2014] UKSC 38, Supreme Court  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R (Nicklinson) v Ministry of Justice [2014] UKSC 38, Supreme Court. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Wallace [2019] EWCA Crim 690, Court of Appeal  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Wallace [2019] EWCA Crim 690, Court of Appeal. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R (Conway) v Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWCA Civ 275, Court of Appeal  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R (Conway) v Secretary of State for Justice [2017] EWCA Civ 275, Court of Appeal. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R v Kuddus [2019] EWCA Crim 837, Court of Appeal  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R v Kuddus [2019] EWCA Crim 837, Court of Appeal. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.

Chapter

Cover Essential Cases: Criminal Law

R (Nicklinson) v Ministry of Justice [2014] UKSC 38, Supreme Court  

Essential Cases: Criminal Law provides a bridge between course textbooks and key case judgments. This case document summarizes the facts and decision in R (Nicklinson) v Ministry of Justice [2014] UKSC 38, Supreme Court. The document also included supporting commentary from author Jonathan Herring.