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Criminal Liability

Criminal Liability

Vasudha is hitchhiking her way from Liverpool to Newcastle. Along the way, she is offered a lift by Del. After an hour or so, Vasudha dozes off. When she awakes she finds that Del has left the highway and has stopped in the driveway of an isolated cabin. Del grabs Vasudha by the arm and drags her inside the cabin. There, he takes away Vasudha’s phone and wallet, rips Vasudha’s trousers off, and tries to have sex with a struggling Vasudha. However, he is unable to maintain an erection, and so he fails to penetrate Vasudha’s vagina with his penis. Frustrated, he locks Vasusha in one room of the cabin and says that he will ‘get in the mood’ first. He goes to the next room, and after a while, Vasudha hears the sound of a pornographic film playing on computer speakers.

 

Unknown to Del, Vasudha knows how to pick a lock. She silently picks the lock on the door of her room and then slips out of the cabin, pausing only to pick up Del’s wallet from the desk. She uses the £45 in the wallet to flag down and pay for a passing taxicab to take her to the closest police station.

 

After a few days, the police finally track down Del, staying under an assumed name in a small lodge not far from the cabin. Del tells the police that his god had told him that the girl to whom he had offered a lift was the human embodiment of the devil, and the only way to save her was to have sex with her, even if she resisted. Medical examination reveals that Del has a benign contusion pressing into a section of his brain that is affecting his perception of reality.

 

Discuss the criminal liability of Del and Vasudha. Also consider whether there are any defences available to either of them.

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Category: Sample Questions