Criminal Law - Case Study ExampleIn order to be able to advise Peeta, it is necessary to discuss the possible charges that might be brought against him and then examine any possible defenses. The starting point is to consider the necessary men's rea and actus reus of the offense of murder to determine whether there is sufficient evidence to charge Peeta with murder. From this, it will be necessary to consider the available defenses such as provocation, diminished responsibility, and automatism. It should then be possible to advise Peeta on the likelihood of the murder charge being reduced to manslaughter. When establishing a charge for murder the prosecution has to show that the defendant intended to kill the victim or to cause them serious bodily harm. The courts have accepted that the defendant has the necessary intention Where a person of sound mind and discretion, unlawfully kills any reasonable creature in being under the Queens Peace with intent to kill or cause grievous bodily harm. (Archbold: 19-1, 2008). R v Moloney  and R v Woollin  have removed the need to prove the malice aforethought element of the offense. There is no longer a need to prove premeditation and charges for murder have been accepted where the prosecution can prove that the defendant intended to cause serious harm to the victim. In determining the guilt of the accused, juries are generally instructed to consider the foresight of the accused on the basis of what the accused ought to have foreseen not what they actual foresaw as a result of their actions.
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