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Alive and well

15 June 2010

Now in the news we have the contro-versial trial of two boys for attempted rape. Much has been made of the wisdom of prosecuting children so young for such a serious offence. Many say that in some circumstances it is not possible to draw a clear line between horseplay – ‘doctors and nurses’ in this case – and criminal activity. Such then are the criticisms that the law should not be involved and this could all be sorted out by a stern ‘fireside chat’ and a strict warning to keep their little hands to themselves. But, as usual, everybody commenting does not know the facts. Highly experienced prosecuting counsel, and a very senior and experienced CPS team, no doubt thought long and hard before bringing the case and – let us not forget – securing convictions.

Let us also not forget that the criminal law requires a guilty mind as well as the act, and so the jury must have been sure that the defendants knew what they were doing was wrong but went on to do it anyway...

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