Disclaimer: This work was produced by one of our expert legal writers, as a learning aid to help law students with their studies.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not reflect the views of LawTeacher.net. Any information contained in this case summary does not constitute legal advice and should be treated as educational content only.

R v Hudson and Taylor

290 words (1 pages) Case Summary

27th Jun 2019 Case Summary Reference this In-house law team

Jurisdiction / Tag(s): UK Law

R v Hudson and Taylor [1971] 2 QB 202

Criminal law- Threat to witness – Perjury


Hudson and Taylor were two girls who were charged with perjury having given false evidence by failing to identify an individual in the courtroom, during the course of a trial. They had self-confessed that the evidence they had given was false and used the defence of duress on the basis that they had been frightened by threat of injury to them if they had identified the individual. They argued that they had seen an individual in the courtroom who was known for violent behaviour. The jury was directed that duress could not provide a defence in the circumstances and on this basis, they were convicted.


When giving direction to the jury, the recorder directed that as the offence of perjury had taken place in the courtroom, there was no threat of violence in this instance and therefore the defence could not be implemented. The issue at hand was whether the danger was ‘present’ for the purposes of employing duress as a defence.


Hudson and Taylor’s appeals were allowed and their convictions were quashed. An essential part of the defence of duress was that the threat should be enough to neutralise the will of the accused at the time the crime was committed. On this basis, the jury should have been able to decide to what extent that the impact of the perceived threat had on the circumstances. It was held that just because the threats, in this case, could not be implemented at the relevant moment, it did not mean that the threat was any less ‘present’ to neutralise the girls’ will.

Cite This Work

To export a reference to this article please select a referencing stye below:

Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.
Reference Copied to Clipboard.

Related Services

View all

Related Content

Jurisdictions / Tags

Content relating to: "UK Law"

UK law covers the laws and legislation of England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland. Essays, case summaries, problem questions and dissertations here are relevant to law students from the United Kingdom and Great Britain, as well as students wishing to learn more about the UK legal system from overseas.

Related Articles