Term 1 syllabus notes:
The nature of crime
The meaning of crime
An act or omission committed against the community at large that is punishable by the state, e.g. when a person commits a murder or even a minor offence such as speeding.
The elements of crime
Actus Reus: A Latin term, which means the guilty act. Actus Reus means that there must be an action or physical movement.
Mens Rea: A Latin term meaning guilty mind, which means that the accused intended to commit the crime knowing their actions were wrong.
The accused intended to commit the crime, knowing their actions were wrong (guilty mind). Three types of mens rea:
Intention: A clear, malicious or wilful intent to commit the crime.
Recklessness: The accused was aware that what they were doing could lead to a crime being committed but chose to do it anyway.
Criminal negligence: The accused fails to foresee the risk where they should have and allows the avoidable danger to manifest.
Strict liability offences
Only actus Reus and causation must be proven, not mens rea.
Offences against the person = Homicide, sexual assault, assault
Offences against the sovereign = Sedition, treason
Economic offences = Computer offences, white collar crimes
Drug offences = Possession, trafficking
Driving offences = Drink driving, speeding
Public order offences = Bomb hoaxes, affray
Preliminary offences = Conspiracy, attempts
Regulatory offences = Breach of water restrictions
The link between the behaviour of the accused and the result
The behaviour of the accused caused the alleged crime to be committed.
Categories of crime including offences against the person, offences against the sovereign, economic offences (property/white collar/computer), drug offences, driving offences, public order offences, preliminary crimes (attempts and conspiracy