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Lecture 2

COMLAW 203 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Actus Reus, Tesco, Mens Rea

Commercial Law
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COMLAW203 Tutorial 3
Semester 1 2017
Criminal and vicarious
Section of the act and you read the words not the title civil or criminal has criminal
provisions wording words like summary conviction, punishment, beyond reasonable amount
Civil law, fine, compensation related general rules for vicarious, imprisonment
Mental ,
Absolute strict liability related to fines different type of Criminal
1. Compare and contrast the purpose of criminal law with the purpose of civil law. Give
one example of a criminal offense and one example of a civil wrong.
Can an employer be liable for the acts of its employee, causes an accident, sue the person
who hurt them, sue the company has money. Allowing people suffered by loss prove
employer and employee are linked together, decide whether a third party can sue a company
-authorised Act Post connection test Firestone case (no criminal only relevant to the
vicarious liability) page 43 of book, Truck driver (drunk driving under the influence) why
under vicarious general and civil
(Criminal acts police, company, civil claims, acc,)
Compensation for loss from the point of view of vicarious liability -
Issue is this the criminal act closely enough related to there employment to sue the
employee, what it his own truck, was he making delivers, therefore the employee is liable
Compensation from his employer/ should he be held liable under two tests
-unauthorised act, outside work hours, no compensation from the employer
Close correction Dubai case
Materialisation of the risk
2. What is a tort? Is a tort a criminal offence of a civil wrong? What does the term “vicarious
liability” mean?
3. Conglomerate Ltd is the sole shareholder in Quick Construction Ltd. The sole director of
Quick Construction, Bob, was appointed as director by Conglomerate and is also a senior
manager at Conglomerate. Quick Construction is undertaking a major road building project.
The work is taking longer than expected and Quick Construction is starting to slip behind
schedule. The board of Conglomerate reminded Bob that he was made director of Quick
Construction to ensure that projects are completed on time.
Bob wants the construction of a new access way to the site to allow in heavy machinery and
increase the speed of construction. Unfortunately, the fences and garage of a nearby property
are in the way. Bob arranges for the fence and garage to catch fire one night. This allows
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COMLAW203 Tutorial 3
Semester 1 2017
heavy machinery to be brought onto the construction site quickly the next day. The actions of
Bob in arranging for the fire are clearly tortious. The property owner is obviously furious.
She wants to sue ‘everybody’.
Advise the neighbour of any rights she may have for compensation against Bob, Quick
Construction and Conglomerate. Do not consider any issues of possible criminal
Third party neigbour
Board putting bob under pressure to get it done on time
-sets fire to garage
-whether the employer is liable
-Apply authorised act in a authorised manner
-when did he do it?
-doing it for the job
Materialistic of a risk inherent Donald case Where an employer puts an employee into
(Materialistic) Employee told won't meet business targets won't get a bonus, exposing them
to be put in a position to do something illegal
Employee should pay compensation
Sue a apparent company in Kyway Asia current principle not apparent authority of sub
Airlines case Shows act of interference
-no apparent company liable protect the concept limited liability, one company is running
another. 3 exceptions bad faith, fraud, act of interference,
Dairy containers case, ingoring commercial reality
4. What are some of the difficulties the courts have faced in the past in making a company
criminally liable? How did the court in Meridian overcome those difficulties?
5. Trout Creek Ltd is a large oil company that owns and operates a number of small land-based
drilling rigs used for drilling for test wells. It takes six people to operate each rig. Each rig is
under the control of a rig foreman.
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