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Act and CrimeThe Philosophy of Action and its Implications for Criminal Law$
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Michael S. Moore

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199599509

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199599509.001.0001

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Introduction

Introduction

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 Introduction
Source:
Act and Crime
Author(s):

Michael S. Moore (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199599509.003.0001

There are six problems that threaten to make the criminal law unwieldy and complex: (1) that acts as such have no common nature; (2) that the types of acts criminal law prohibits are as diverse as the thousands of verbs of action that describe them; (3) that where and when a criminal act occurs varies with each kind of act; (4) that the mental state requirements are as diverse as are the types of actions such mental states are about; (5) that there is no general solution to the overlapping statutes problem (where more than one statute is violated by a single act); and (6) that there is no general solution to the unit of offense problem (where more than one act violates a single statute). The doctrines of voluntary act, actus reus, and double jeopardy all exist to provide general solutions to these worries. Various scepticisms about the coherence of these three doctrines are discussed.

Keywords:   voluntary act, actus reus, double jeopardy, scepticism, legislative drafting

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