The Court of Appeal upheld a conviction for murder as it could not be said that a direction given by the trial judge in answer to a question asked by the jury during their deliberations was inadequate. Minimum terms of 30 years’ imprisonment were also held to be appropriate where the offenders had systematically ill-treated the victim, who had been employed as their nanny, before her death in appalling circumstances.
A company was denied leave to appeal against its conviction for conspiracy to corrupt even though two directors who had constituted its “directing mind and will” (DMW) were not present at trial and did not give evidence. Their absence did not render the trial unfair, given that a company was a separate legal entity and there was no rule of law or practice which required a DMW to be indicted with the company or to be available at trial to give evidence.
Despite the absence of certain evidence at trial, the appellant’s convictions for sexual assault and rape of his half-sister were safe, because the totality of the trial process including the directions given and the summing up was fair.
The conviction of the owner of a food takeaway business for gross negligence manslaughter, following the death of a customer who suffered from a peanut allergy, was quashed as unsafe. When directing the jury, the judge had conflated the general duty owed by the owner to ensure that appropriate safety systems were in place to protect customers with declared allergies and the duties of those responsible for ensuring that appropriate steps had been taken.
A young offender’s conviction for murder was not unsafe, as he had not shown that a change in the law regarding joint enterprise following his conviction would have affected the jury’s verdict.