Regina v Powell (Anthony) and Another; Regina v English: HL 30 Oct 1997

When the court looked at the issue of foreseeability of murder in an allegation of joint enterprise, there was no requirement to show intent by the secondary party. The forseeability of the risk of the principal committing the offence from the point of view of the secondary party is sufficient. The question certified was ‘Is it sufficient to found a conviction for murder for a secondary party to a killing to have realised that the primary party might kill with intent to do so or must the secondary party have held such intention himself?’
Held: The appeal was dismissed.
A secondary party to a criminal enterprise may be criminally liable for a greater criminal offence committed by the primary offender of a type which the former foresaw but did not necessarily intend. It is sufficient to found a conviction for murder for a secondary party to have realised that in the course of the joint enterprise the primary party might kill with intent to do so or with intent to cause grievous bodily harm.
Lord Steyn said: ‘Experience has shown that joint criminal Enterprises only too often escalate into commission of greater offences. In order to deal with this important social problem, the accessory principle is needed and cannot be bolished or relaxed.’

Lord Goff of Chieveley, Lord Jauncey of Tullichettle Lord Mustil, Lord Steyn, Lord Hutton
Times 31-Oct-1997, [1997] UKHL 45, [1997] 4 All ER 545, [1999] AC 1, [1997] 3 WLR 959, [1998] Crim LR 48, [1998] 1 Cr App Rep 261, [1997] UKHL 57
House of Lords, Bailii, Bailii
Accessories and Abettors Act 1861 8
England and Wales
CitedRegina v Anderson; Regina v Morris CACD 1966
The court considered criminal liability under the joint enterprise rule where the principle took the action beyond what had been anticipated. Parker CJ said: ‘It seems to this court that to say that adventurers are guilty of manslaughter when one of . .
CitedChan Wing-Siu v The Queen PC 21-Jun-1984
The appellant and co-accused were charged with murder. They said they had gone to meet the deceased to collect a debt, but had been attacked with a knife by the deceased. Two of the three had knives and knew of the other knife.
Held: All were . .
CitedHui Chi-ming v The Queen PC 5-Aug-1991
(Hong Kong) The defendant was charged with aiding and abetting a murder. A, carrying a length of water pipe and accompanied by the defendant and four other youths, seized a man and A hit him with the pipe, causing injuries from which he died. No . .
Appeal fromRegina v Powell, Regina v Daniel CACD 2-Jun-1995
A secondary party to a murder need only know of first party’s violent intentions to be guilty. . .

Cited by:
CitedRegina v KJ Martin CACD 20-Feb-2003
The defendant had been found unfit to plead on a charge of murder. Charges against the co-defendants were later reduced to inflicting grievous bodily harm, but when the defendant came to be dealt with, it was on the basis that the charge remained . .
CitedRegina v Woollin HL 2-Apr-1998
The defendant appealed against his conviction for the murder of his child. He had thrown the child to the floor, hitting the head. He said that he had not intended to kill the child.
Held: On a murder charge, where the short direction on . .
CitedBalkissoon Roodal v The State PC 20-Nov-2003
(Trinidad and Tobago) The appellant challenged the automatic death sentence imposed upon him for murder.
Held: There were conflicting constitutional provisions. Following Fisher, in the context of issues of capital sentences a wider view was . .
CitedRegina v Van Hoogstraten CACD 12-Dec-2003
The prosecution appealed against the refusal of the crown court to remit the case for retrial.
Held: The court had no jurisdiction to entertain an appeal against this ruling because it was not within the ambit of section 29(2) of the 1996 Act. . .
CitedRegina v Derek William Bentley (Deceased) CACD 30-Jul-1998
The defendant had been convicted of murder in 1952, and hung. A court hearing an appeal after many years must apply laws from different eras to different aspects. The law of the offence (of murder) to be applied was that at the time of the offence. . .
CitedWatson v Regina PC 7-Jul-2004
(Jamaica) The defendant was convicted of two murders from the same incident. The Act provided for the death penalty if he was convicted of a second murder. He appealed the death sentence in the circumstances, and said also that it was . .
CitedMariotti v Government of Italy and others Admn 2-Dec-2005
The extraditee had been convicted in his absence in Italy having fled to avoid the trial. He complained that the trial process had been unfair and the evidence against him weak.
Held: The court’s duty was not to investigate the evidential . .
CitedTaylor v The Queen PC 13-Mar-2006
(Jamaica) The defendant appealed against his conviction for murder. He complained that admissions against each other by the co-defendants had been entered in evidence despite his allegations of police mistreatment. The statement was the only . .
CitedWebster v Regina CACD 3-Mar-2006
The appellant challenged his conviction for aiding an abetting the causing of death by dangerous driving as a passenger. The driver had been drunk.
Held: The mere intoxication of the driver was not of itself and alone sufficient to establish . .
CitedRegina v Rahman; Regina v Akram; Regina v Amin; Regina v Ali CACD 23-Feb-2007
The defendants appealed their convictions for murder. There had been a joint violent attack, but each said they did not know that the principle assailant carried and would use a knife, and said the judge’s directions on joint enterprise were . .
CitedRahman and Others, Regina v HL 2-Jul-2008
The defendants appealed against their convictions for murder. None had themselves inflicted any violence, but were convicted as part of a joint enterprise. They said they had not known that the principal carried a knife. They said that the evidence . .
CitedMitchell and Another, Regina v CACD 4-Nov-2008
The appellant challenged their convictions as ancillary parties to a murder, particularly as to the joint enterprise direction. There had been a scuffle outside a pub. The appellant went away with others to a nearby house, and returned with them . .
CitedMartin v Regina CACD 6-Jul-2010
The defendant had been a passenger on a car driven by a learner driver. The car crashed killing the driver and seriously injuring another. He appealed against his conviction for aiding and abetting dangerous driving.
Held: The appeal . .
CitedRegina v Bryce CACD 18-May-2004
The defendant said that his involvement in the murder of which he had been convicted had been secondary only. He was alleged to have transported the killer and the gun which he used to commit the murder to a caravan near the victim’s home so that . .
CitedEquality and Human Rights Commission v Prime Minister and Others Admn 3-Oct-2011
The defendant had published a set of guidelines for intelligence officers called upon to detain and interrogate suspects. The defendant said that the guidelines could only be tested against individual real life cases, and that the court should not . .
CitedRegina v Uddin CACD 19-Mar-1998
A co-accused in a murder by a gang, where the existence of the murder weapon which was used, was outside the expectation of the defendant, need not himself be guilty, because of the different circumstances which applied in his case. . .
CitedGnango, Regina v CACD 26-Jul-2010
The defendant appealed against his conviction for murder. He had engaged in a street battle using guns. A bullet from an opponent killed an innocent passer by. The court was asked whether the principles of joint venture and transferred malice could . .
CitedGnango, Regina v SC 14-Dec-2011
The prosecutor appealed against a successful appeal by the defendant against his conviction for murder. He and an opponent had engaged in a street battle using guns. His opponent had shot an innocent passer by. The court was now asked as to whether . .
CitedJogee and Ruddock (Jamaica) v The Queen SC 18-Feb-2016
Joint Enterprise Murder
The two defendants appealed against their convictions (one in Jamaica) for murder, under the law of joint enterprise. Each had been an accessory when their accomplice killed a victim with a knife. The judge in Jogee had directed the jury that he . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.


Leading Case

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.158920