3.1) Basic criminal damage

How does the Criminal Damage Act 1971, S 1(1) define basic criminal damage?
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What happened in Roe v Kingerlee?- Mud was spread on the walls of a police cell - This cost £7 to remove and was held to be damageWhat happened in A (a juvenile) v R?- The court held that spitting on a policeman's raincoat was not criminal damage - It was argued that the spittle could be wiped away with a cloth to return the raincoat to its original state without a mark or stainWhat did the court state in Morphitis v Salmon?'[Criminal damage includes] not only permanent or temporary physical harm, but also permanent or temporary impairment of value or usefulness.'What happened in Fiak?- F stuffed his blanket down the toilet in his prison cell and then repeatedly flushed the toilet - This flooded the cell - Although the floor was waterproof and the blanket was washable, this constituted damage as both were temporarily unusableHow does s 10(1) CDA 1971 define 'property'?'In this Act, "property" means property of a tangible nature, whether real or personal, including money and - a) including wild creatures which have been tamed or are ordinarily kept in captivity, and any other wild creatures or their carcasses if, but only if, they have been reduced into possession which has not been lost or abandoned or are in the course of being reduced into possession; but b) not including mushrooms growing wild on any land or flowers, fruit or foliage of a plant growing wild on any land. · For the purposes of this subsection, "mushroom" includes any fungus and "plant" includes any shrub or tree.'What did the court hold in R v Whitely?That information does not fall within the definition of 'property' contained in the CDA 1971, s 10(1).How does S 10(2) CDA 1971 define 'belonging to another'?'Property shall be treated for the purposes of this Act as belonging to any person— a) having the custody or control of it; b) having in it any proprietary right or interest (not being an equitable interest arising only from an agreement to transfer or grant an interest); or c) having a charge on it.'Can property belong to more than one person?Yes. Where D owns property, it can still belong to another, such as a co-owner.What about if a property is mortgaged?It will also belong to the bank or mortgage company by virtue of S 10(2)(c).What is the mens rea for basic criminal damage?The intention or recklessness as to the destruction or damage of property belonging to another.What is intention to be given?Its ordinary meaning (R v Moloney).What does it therefore require consideration of?Whether, at the time D carried out the actus reus, it was D's aim or purpose to destroy or damage the property belonging to another.What did the House of Lords state in R v G that the prosecution must prove in order to convict a person of reckless criminal damage?a) at the time of committing the actus reus, the accused was subjectively aware of a risk; an b) in the circumstances known to the accused, it was objectively unreasonable for the accused to take that risk.What has been confirmed?That the mens rea extends to the whole of the actus reus.What did the Court of Appeal hold?That it is insufficient that D does an act that damages property intentionally.What else must be proved?That D knew, or was reckless as to whether, the property belonged to another.What happened in R v Smith?- Smith, who lived in rented accommodation with his brother, had installed electrical wiring to connect a stereo system - He had also, with his brother's help and the landlord's permission, put down floorboards, wall panels and roofing material - After two years, Smith decided to vacate the flat and asked permission for his brother to remain: the landlord declined - After this, Smith smashed the wall panels, floorboards and roofing material, doing so, he said, to gain access to the wiring that he had fitted, in order to remove it - He was found guiltyWhat was held in R v Smith?- The Court of Appeal allowed the appeal and quashed his conviction (per James LJ) - 'Construing the language of s 1(1), we have no doubt that the actus reus is "destroying or damaging any property belonging to another" - It is not possible to exclude the words "belonging to another" which describe the "property" - Applying the ordinary principles of mens rea, the intention and recklessness and the absence of lawful excuse required to constitute the offence have reference to property belonging to another - It follows that in our judgment no offence is committed under this section if a person destroys or causes damage to property belonging to another if he does so in the honest though mistaken belief that the property is his own, and provided that the belief is honestly held it is irrelevant to consider whether or not it is a justifiable belief'Therefore, while ignorance of the criminal law is no defence, this case is an example of how...Ignorance of the civil law can prevent liability.What is arson?Criminal damage by fire, however slight.What is basic arson charged under?S1(1) and S1(3) CDA 1971.What is the actus reus of arson?- Destroy or damage by fire - Property - Belonging to another - Without lawful excuseWhat is the mens rea of arson?- Intention or recklessness as to the destruction or damage of property belonging to another by fire - The CDA 1971, s 1(3) provides: 'Any offence committed under this section by destroying or damaging property by fire shall be charged as arson.'