The Practical Lawyer


Offences – Theft Act

The driving must have been at fault for a person to be convicted of aggravated vehicle taking under s12A Theft Act 1968. The appellant (A) in this case successfully appealed a point of law that arose in his trial for aggravated vehicle taking under s12A. 
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Offences – sentencing

This article provides busy practitioners with a helpful summary of further changes that have come into force under the Serious Crime Act 2015. 
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Procedure – evidence

The refusal by the courts to permit disclosure of material in a case heard in camera to the ECtHR did not constitute a breach of international law. 
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Sentencing – mitigating and aggravating factors

The trial judge’s starting point as to sentencing had been too high due to mitigating factors, and the sentence for another defendant had been too long given his limited involvement in the offence. In this case, the Court of Appeal allowed the appellants’ appeals against sentences following convictions for conspiracy to blackmail.
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Offences – bribery

The SFO has sentenced Sweett Group PLC following a conviction for failing to prevent an act of bribery intended to secure and retain a contract with Al Ain Ahlia Insurance Company contrary to s7(1)(b) Bribery Act 2010.
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Joint enterprise – intent

The Supreme Court has considered, in two cases, the mental element of intent which should be proved when a defendant is accused of being a secondary party to a crime (joint enterprise). 
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Evidence – LPP and technology

To what extent can legal professional privilege (LPP) be invoked when withholding documents from public bodies, or when electronic devices are seized using statutory powers? 
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Evidence – bad character

When will previous convictions suggest a propensity to commit murder? The appellant (A) was convicted of murder and arson with intent to endanger life. He was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum term of 30 years and with a concurrent determinate sentence for the offence of arson. His co-defendant was acquitted.

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Offences – fraud; LPAs

The Court of Appeal has clarified when an attorney under a lasting power of Attorney (LPA) could face criminal prosecution. Attorneys under an LPA must only use such of the donor’s funds as are reasonably required for their needs.

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Sexual offences – anonymity

Complainants of sexual abuse increasingly have public support. We now have measures to assist those who find themselves affected by sexual offences. In this article, the commentator explores the current climate together with important issues relating to anonymity of an alleged abuser.

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