Criminal Damage

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Flashcards on Criminal Damage, created by littlelottie on 04/30/2013.

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Created by littlelottie almost 6 years ago
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Section 5 lawful defences/excuse
R v Hill and Hall Valerie hill and Jennifer hall were charged under section 3 of the criminal damage act 1971 with having an article intending without lawful excuse to destroy or damage property belonging to another. They sought to rely on a defence under section 5 that they had a lawful excuse in that they were acting to protect property belonging to another. They were found in possession of a hacksaw blade, with which they intended to cut party of the perimeter fence of the US naval facility in England. They are acting as part of a campaign organised by the campaign for nuclear disarmament aimed at pursuing the UK government to abandon nuclear weapons. They claimed that to do so would protection their and their neighbours' property. The applications were refused.
section 1(3) criminal damages act arson
section 1(2) aggravated criminal damage- intention
R v Steer Dennis steer fired several shots at the windows of his former business partners house. No injuries were caused to those inside. He was charged with damaging property being reckless whether the life of another would be endangered contrary to section 1(2). The certified question was 'whether, upon a true construction of section 1 (2) the prosecution are required to prove that the danger to life resulted from the destruction or damage to the property, or whether it is sufficient for the prosecution to prove that it resulted from the act of the defendant which caused the destruction or damage. The appeal was dismissed.
R v Dudley D damaged by fire (arson) an occupied house. He threw a firebomb at it. The occupants of the house quickly put out the fire, which caused little damage. Held: Lives were not actually endangered but this is irrelevant. It was D's intention to endanger lives or D was reckless as to whether life was endangered. If at the time that D committed the act in question there was an obvious risk that lives would be endangered, the necessary mens rea existed. Guilty
R v Hill and Hall D's were in possession of a hacksaw blade with intent to damage property. Their intention was to cut the fence of a US naval base in England. They were part of a CND campaign. They had an honest belief that the damage was justified to protect other property. In the event of war, the base would be the subject of nuclear attack damage would occur to the surrounding area, including their own property. Held: D's acts would be too remote from the eventual harm they were protecting the property from. Guilty
R v Kelleher D entered an art gallery and decapitated a statue of Baroness Thatcher in protest at her policies which he foresaw were leading the world towards its eventual destruction. The judge directed the jury to convict because of none of the evidence was disputed and the statutory defence did not engage with D. Held: A judge is never entitled to direct a jury to return a verdict of guilty. A defence of lawful excuse was only available where, whatever the defendant’s state of mind, the defendant’s act had been in order to protect his own property or right or interest, or that of anyone else. The Court examined, once again, the breadth of the defence of “lawful excuse” to a charge of criminal damage. They doubted R v Hill (1989). The evidence was overwhelming in any event, so the the conviction was safe.
Morphitis v Salmon (1990) D put a scaffold bar across an access road. The road led to premises used by himself and M. When M dismantled the barrier to gain access, he scratched the scaffold bar. Held: A scratch on a metal scaffolding bar could not amount to criminal damage because it did not impair its usefulness or value. The removal of the scaffold bar impaired the usefulness of the roadblock, and that would amount to criminal damage. Not guilty - but would have been if correct charge had been put.
R v Steer [Criminal Damage with intent to endanger life must result from the damage] D fired at V, who life was endangered by the shooting not from the window that was broken Held: for this offence life must be endangered by damage. Not guilty
Criminal Damages Act 1971 (1)A person who without lawful excuse destroys or damages any property belonging to another intending to destroy or damage any such property or being reckless as to whether any such property would be destroyed or damaged shall be guilty of an offence.
Section 10 criminal damage act definition of property