Importance Of Mens Rea In Irish Criminal Law

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The extent to which a person can be made liable under Irish criminal law for failing to act once they have voluntarily assumed responsibility for another person.

When most people think of criminal law, they inherently think of crimes such as murder or rape which usually require the culprit to have some sort of idea of the consequences their act will bring. This awareness is called mens rea and it refers to the knowledge of wrongdoing as a part of a crime. Mens rea and actus reus, the actual criminal act, must both be usually shown in order to prove a crime, however there are some exceptions which do not require mens rea to be shown. This affects crimes of omission as mens rea is not always a requirement while actus reus is.
To determine a
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An important case in this category is R v Gibbins and Proctor which shows a husband whose wife neglected to feed their 7 year old child, who eventually starved to death. The husband and wife were both convicted for murder on the account of the of him having a responsibility to his child, and the wife having a special relationship to the child due to being in care of her alongside her husband, even though she was not the biological mother. In the case the necessary mens rea was found which led to a murder …show more content…
Assumption of care can be applied to any individual who takes on the care of another person. Decisions on assumption of care will rely on the circumstances of the case to decide if the defendant voluntarily assumed the care of the victim. A case of this type can be seen in R v Stone and Dobinson . The case revolved around the defendants who took in Stones sister with the assumption of taking care of her. The two defendants both had low IQ’s, this led to the worsening of the victims health due to the defendants lack of care which inevitably led to her

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