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Crime

Sentencing – speeding

Greater sentencing powers for magistrates are now in force in respect of fines for serious speeding offences. Notably, there is a new higher penalty for excessive speeding above legal speed limits.

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Procedure – death of defendant

 

It is critical to maintain an approach to criminal justice that is consistent and even-handed, maintaining a definitive position that the death of a defendant brings any criminal prosecution of that defendant to an end. So said Sir Brian Leveson P, giving judgment in the Court of Appeal in a case where the defendant died before the jury gave its verdicts.

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Defences – dangerous driving

Is self-defence capable in law of being invoked as a defence to a charge of dangerous driving? In a somewhat unusual case, A was convicted of making off without payment, and one count of dangerous driving. She had taken a cab ride home and told the driver she would go in to collect the fare, and return within two minutes. She failed to do so, but a few minutes later he spotted her, having changed her clothes and getting into another car.

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Procedure – confiscation proceedings

There was no basis on which to grant an extension of time, the Court of Appeal ruled, in a renewed application for an extension of time of nearly eight years to appeal against a confiscation order.

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Offences – conveying prohibited articles into prison

The mens rea required for a conviction of conveying a prohibited article into a prison under the Prison Act 1952 has been clarified. The offence is not one of strict liability, contrary to what some practitioners wrongly believe.

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Appeal – trial in D’s absence

The appellant appealed his conviction, in his absence, of an offence of conspiracy to supply cannabis contrary to s1 Criminal Law Act 1977. A suffered from chronic heart disease, and the consultant cardiologists all agreed that A could not cope with physical attendance throughout a normal trial.

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Procedure – CPR amendments

The latest amendments to the CPR are now in force as of 3 April 2017. The Criminal Procedure (Amendment) Rules 2017 introduce new rules concerning:

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Arrest – convention rights

The police may arrest and detain individuals to prevent an imminent breach of the peace where there is insufficient time to give a warning, without breaching Article 5 ECHR.

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Evidence – DNA

A new judgment broadens the principle of bringing cases only on the basis of matching DNA. The author of this article highlights a common misconception about the status of DNA evidence.

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Offences – sexual communication with a child

A new offence of sexual communication with a child is now in force under s67 Serious Crime Act 2015 (Commencement No. 6) Regulations 2017 (SI 2017 No. 451).

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Most-read articles

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A summary of the requirements for new lets of residential properties: Read more...
Rent reviews – which index?
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Rent under a lease may well be indexed – in which case, it is likely to be by reference to the retail price index (RPI). Read more...
Japanese knotweed – the cases
Thursday, 14 June 2018
Japanese knotweed is virtually irremovable; only the strongest chemicals will work against it, and simply digging out the roots is not sufficient. Read more...
Financial orders – future earning capacity
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H’s future earning capacity was not a matrimonial asset for the purposes of a financial settlement, the Court of Appeal has ruled. Read more...
Notice – start date?
Thursday, 14 June 2018
Suppose an employee is sent a letter of dismissal by post. The letter is delivered, but the employee is on holiday and says she did not read it until a later date. Read more...
Sentencing – hospital orders; hybrid orders
Thursday, 14 June 2018
In this article, the author (who represented the appellant) considers the making of hospital orders in criminal proceedings, and the use of hybrid orders, following a Court of Appeal ruling. Read more...

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