Manslaughter is a legal term for the killing of a human being, in a manner considered by law as less culpable than murder.
The law generally differentiates between levels of criminal culpability based on the mens rea, or state of mind. This is particularly true within the law of homicide, where murder requires either the intent to kill – a state of mind called malice, or malice aforethought – or the knowledge that one's actions are likely to result in death; manslaughter, on the other hand, requires a lack of any prior intention to kill or create a deadly situation.
Manslaughter is usually broken down into two distinct categories: voluntary manslaughter and involuntary manslaughter.
VOLUNTARY MANSLAUGHTER occurs either when the defendant kills with malice aforethought (intention to kill or cause serious harm), but there are mitigating circumstances which reduce culpability, or when the defendant kills only with an intent to cause serious bodily harm. Voluntary manslaughter in some jurisdictions is a lesser included offense of murder. The traditional mitigating factor was provocation; however, others have been added in various jurisdictions.
INVOLUNTARY MANSLAUGHTER is the unlawful killing of a human being without malice aforethought. It is distinguished from voluntary manslaughter by the absence of intention. It is normally divided into two categories; constructive manslaughter and criminally negligent manslaughter.
If you have been charged with MANSLAUGHTER it is vital you find the best criminal lawyers in Sydney to defend your case. At CRIMLAW our experienced lawyers and accredited criminal law specialists will structure a comprehensive criminal defence that is targeted at enhancing your chances of a successful outcome.
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