Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Prosecutor v. Furundzija case brief


Prosecutor v. Furundzija
U.S. Supreme Court
327 U.S. 1, 13-16, 28, 34-35 (1946)

FACTS
Soldier charged with aiding and abetting perpetration of outrages upon personal dignity, including rape.  D was present when another member of his unit raped the victim.  D did not personally rape the victim himself.
ISSUE
Is D liable under a theory of vicarious liability?
HOLDING
Yes, he had the actus reus and mens rea.  It is not necessary that the aider and abettor should know the precise crime that was intended and which in the event was committed.  If he is aware that one of a number of crimes will probably be committed, and one of those crimes is committed, he has intended to facilitate the commission of that crime and is guilty as an aider and abettor.
ANALYSIS
-The court looks at actus reus, states that cases suggest that the assistance given by an accomplice need not be tangible and can consist of moral support in some circumstances.
-Acts of the accomplice need not bear a causal relational to those of the principal.
-For mens rea, the court states that it is not necessary that the D shares and identifies with the principal’s criminal will and purpose, provided that his own conduct was with knowledge.
RULES
-The actus reus of aiding and abetting in int’l criminal law requires practical assistance, encouragement, or moral support which has a substantial effect on the perpetration of the crime.
-Accomplice must have knowledge that his actions will assist the perpetrator in the commission of the crime.

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