Mens rea

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Dalam undang-undang jenayah, mens rea – istilah bahasa Latin untuk "minda yang bersalah"[1] – adalah biasanya salah satu dari unsur yang diperlukan suatu jenayah. Ujian common law piawai liabiliti jenayah biasanya dijelaskan dalam frasa bahasa Latin, actus non facit reum nisi mens sit rea, yang bermaksud "tindakan tidak semestinya membuat seorang bersalah kecuali minda juga bersalah". Oleh itu, dalam bidang kuasa dengan proses sebenar, seharusnya terdapat suatu actus reus ditemani oleh sesetengah peringkat mens rea untuk membentuk jenayah yang mana defendan didakwa (lihat keperluan teknikal kesetemuan). Undang-undang Jenayah biasanya tidak digunakan pada seorang yang telah bertindak dengan ketidakhadiran kesalahan mental; ini adalah peraturan umum.

Pengecualian adalah jenayah liabiliti ketat (dalam undang-undang sivil, ia biasanya tidak perlu untuk membuktikan unsur mental subjektif untuk membentuk liabiliti, katakan untuk mungkir kontrak atau tort, walaupun jika secara sengaja dilakukan, ini boleh menambahkan kiraan kerosakan dibayar untuk ganti rugi plaintif dan juga lingkungan liabiliti).

Agak secara mudah oleh itu mens rea merujuk kepada unsur mental kesalahan yang menemani actus reus. Dalam sesetengah bidang kuasa istilah mens rea dan actus reus telah digantikan oleh terminologi alternatif. Di Australia contohnya unsur-unsur semua kesalahan persekutuan kini digelarkan "unsur bersalah" (mens rea) dan "unsur fizikal" (actus reus). Terminologi ini telah digunakan supaya dapat menggantikan kekaburan istilah-istilah bahasa Latin dengan fras ringkas dan tepat.[2]

Ujian subjektif dan objektif[sunting | sunting sumber]

Ujian untuk kemunculan mens rea mungkin:

(a) subjektif, di mana mahkamah harus puas bahawa yang dituduh sebenarnya mempunyai elemen mental yang diperlukan hadir dalam mindanya pada waktu yang berpatutan (untuk secara bertujuan, mengetahui, tidak berhati-hati dsb) (lihat persetujuan);
(b) objektif, di mana elemen yang perlu mens rea menuduh pada yang telah dituduh, pada dasar bahawa seorang bertimbang rasa akan mempunyai elemen mental dalam keadaan sama (untuk kelalaian); atau
(c) gabungan, di mana ujian adalah subjektif dan objektif.

Mahkamah akan mempunyai sedikit kesukaran dalam menubuhkan mens rea jika ada sebenarnya bukti – misalnya, jika yang dituduh membuat suatu admissible admission. Ini akan memuaskan suatu ujian subjektif. Tetapi sebahagian agak besar yang dituduh melakukan jenayah tidak membuat admission seperti yang dikatakan tersebut. Oleh itu, sesetengah peringkat keobjektifan harus ditanggung sebagai asas yang mana untuk menuduh komponen yang perlu. Ia sentiasa adalah bertimbang rasa untuk menganggap bahawa orang dari kecerdikan biasa menyedari keliling fizikal mereka dan dari hukum biasa sebab dan kesan (lihat penyebaban). Oleh itu, apabila seorang merancang apa yang dilakukan dan apa yang tidak dilakukan, dia akan memahami lingkungan likely outcomes dari kelakuan yang diberikan pada skala gelincir dari "inevitable" ke "probable" ke "possible" ke "improbable". The more an outcome shades towards the "inevitable" end of the scale, the more likely it is that the accused both foresaw and desired it, and, therefore, the safer it is to impute intention. If there is clear subjective evidence that the accused did not have foresight, but a reasonable person would have, the hybrid test may find criminal negligence. In terms of the burden of proof, the requirement is that a jury must have a high degree of certainty before convicting. It is this reasoning that justifies the defences of infancy, and of lack of mental capacity under the M'Naghten Rules, and the various statutes defining mental illness as an excuse. Self-evidently, if there is an irrebuttable presumption of doli incapax - that is, that the accused did not have sufficient understanding of the nature and quality of his actions – then the requisite mens rea is absent no matter what degree of probability might otherwise have been present. For these purposes, therefore, where the relevant statutes are silent and it is for the common law to form the basis of potential liability, the reasonable person must be endowed with the same intellectual and physical qualities as the accused, and the test must be whether an accused with these specific attributes would have had the requisite foresight and desire.

In English law, s8 Criminal Justice Act 1967 provides a statutory framework within which mens rea is assessed. It states:

A court or jury, in determining whether a person has committed an offence,
(a) shall not be bound in law to infer that he intended or foresaw a result of his actions by reasons only of its being a natural and probable consequence of those actions; but
(b) shall decide whether he did intend or foresee that result by reference to all the evidence, drawing such inferences from the evidence as appear proper in the circumstances.

Under s8(b) therefore, the jury is allowed a wide latitude in applying a hybrid test to impute intention or foresight (for the purposes of recklessness) on the basis of all the evidence.

Keberkaitan motif[sunting | sunting sumber]

One of the mental components often raised in issue is that of motive. If the accused admits to having a motive consistent with the elements of foresight and desire, this will add to the level of probability that the actual outcome was intended (it makes the prosecution case more credible). But if there is clear evidence that the accused had a different motive, this may decrease the probability that he or she desired the actual outcome. In such a situation, the motive may become subjective evidence that the accused did not intend, but was reckless or willfully blind.[perlu rujukan]

Motive cannot be a defence. If, for example, a person breaks into a laboratory used for the testing of pharmaceuticals on animals, the question of guilt is determined by the presence of an actus reus, i.e. entry without consent and damage to property, and a mens rea, i.e. intention to enter and cause the damage. That the person might have had a clearly articulated political motive to protest such testing does not affect liability. If motive has any relevance, this may be addressed in the sentencing part of the trial, when the court considers what punishment, if any, is appropriate.[perlu rujukan]

Niat[sunting | sunting sumber]

Rencana utama: Niat (jenayah)

Recklessness (Amerika Syarikat: "willful blindness")[sunting | sunting sumber]

In such cases, there is clear subjective evidence that the accused foresaw but did not desire the particular outcome. When the accused failed to stop the given behavior, he took the risk of causing the given loss or damage. There is always some degree of intention subsumed within recklessness. During the course of the conduct, the accused foresees that he may be putting another at risk of injury: A choice must be made at that point in time. By deciding to proceed, the accused actually intends the other to be exposed to the risk of that injury. The greater the probability of that risk maturing into the foreseen injury, the greater the degree of recklessness and, subsequently, sentence rendered. For example, at common law, an unlawful homicide committed recklessly would ordinarily constitute the crime of voluntary manslaughter. One committed with "extreme" or "gross" recklessness as to human life would constitute murder, sometimes defined as "depraved heart" or "abandoned and malignant heart" murder.

Criminal negligence[sunting | sunting sumber]

Rencana utama: Criminal negligence

Here, the test is both subjective and objective. There is credible subjective evidence that the particular accused neither foresaw nor desired the particular outcome, thus potentially excluding both intention and recklessness. But a reasonable person with the same abilities and skills as the accused would have foreseen and taken precautions to prevent the loss and damage being sustained. Only a small percentage of offences are defined with this mens rea requirement. Most legislatures prefer to base liability on either intention or recklessness and, faced with the need to establish recklessness as the default mens rea for guilt, those practising in most legal systems rely heavily on objective tests to establish the minimum requirement of foresight for recklessness.

Lihat juga[sunting | sunting sumber]

Rujukan[sunting | sunting sumber]

Catatan[sunting | sunting sumber]

  1. Elizabeth A. Martin, ed. (2003), Oxford Dictionary of Law, Oxford: Oxford University Press, ISBN 0198607563 
  2. Brent Fisse, "Howard's Criminal Law" (1990) 12-13.

Sumber[sunting | sunting sumber]

  • Dubber, Markus D. (2002). Criminal Law: Model Penal Code. Foundation Press. 

Pautan luar[sunting | sunting sumber]