Regina v Merriman: CACD 1973

Although the criminal division of the Court of Appeal is not so strictly bound by its own previous decisions as is the civil division, its liberty to depart from precedent which it is convinced was erroneous is restricted to cases where the departure is in favour of the accused. This would not be the case in the instant appeal. As to the issue of duplicity: ‘The rule against duplicity . . had always been applied in a practical, rather than a strictly analytical, way for the purpose of determining what constituted one offence. Where a number of acts of a similar nature committed by one or more defendants were connected with one another, in the time and place of their commission or by their common purpose, in such a way that they could fairly be regarded as forming part of the same transaction or criminal enterprise, it was the practice as early as the eighteenth century to charge them in a single count of indictment. ‘ (Lord Diplock)
References: [1973] AC 584
Judges: Lord Diplock
Jurisdiction: England and Wales
This case cites:

  • Cited – Regina v Gould CACD 1968 ([1968] 2 QB 65)
    Diplock LJ said: ‘In its criminal jurisdiction, which it has inherited from the Court of Criminal Appeal, the Court of Appeal does not apply the doctrine of stare decisis with the same rigidity as in its civil jurisdiction. If upon due consideration . .
  • Approved – Jemmison v Priddle 1972 ([1972] 56 Cr App R 229)
    ‘it is legitimate to charge on a single information one activity even though the activity may involve more than one act’. . .

This case is cited by:

  • Cited – Simpson v Regina CACD 23-May-2003 ([2003] EWCA Crim 1499, Times 26-May-03, Gazette 10-Jul-03, [2004] QB 118, [2003] 3 WLR 337, [2003] Cr App R 36, , [2004] 1 Cr App R (S) 24, [2003] 2 Cr App R 36, [2003] 3 All ER 531)
    The appellant challenged a confiscation order. It was argued that one could not be made unless a proper notice had been given, and none of the offences occurred before 1995. On the assumption that section 1 of the 1995 Act was not in force, did the . .
  • Cited – Tovey and Another v Regina CACD 9-Mar-2005 (, [2005] EWCA Crim 530, Times 19-Apr-05)
    Each defendant appealed sentences where he had committed a series of offences and the sentence had been for specimen acts.
    Held: When choosing representative offences a prosecutor should be careful to try to give the court a proper picture of . .

These lists may be incomplete.
Last Update: 22 September 2020; Ref: scu.182384