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R v Wilson - 1996

323 words (1 pages) Case Summary

30th Sep 2021 Case Summary Reference this In-house law team

Jurisdiction / Tag(s): UK Law

Legal Case Summary

R v Wilson [1996] 2 Cr. App. R. 241

Criminal –Consent – Consensual bodily harm between husband and wife

Facts of R v Wilson

Alan Wilson was charged under s 47 of the Offences Against the Person Act 1861 for assault. He branded his initials into his wife’s buttocks with a hot knife.

Issues in R v Wilson

The first issue was whether R v Brown (1993) 97 Cr. App. R. 44, is an authority for the proposition that consent is not a defence to assault occasioning actual bodily harm to a person, under s 47 of the Act. Further, when criminal investigation or conviction is required where consensual activity between a couple occurs in the privacy of their own home. Where consensual activity has taken place in the privacy of one’s home, and is has not serious or extreme in nature, a defence of consent is valid against s 47 of the Act and it is not a proper matter for criminal investigation.

Decision/Outcome of R v Wilson

The court distinguished the case of R v Brown holding that the engagement of the defendants in sadomasochism which led to the decision to convict the defendant under s 47 of the Act was extreme, with a serious risk of injury occurring. There was no factual comparison to be made between the actions of Wilson and the facts presented in R vBrown and there was no aggressive intent on the part of Wilson. It was further held that consensual activity between a husband and wife in the privacy of their own home was not a matter for criminal investigation or conviction. Therefore, consent was a valid defence to s 47. The appeal was allowed and the conviction was quashed.

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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.

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