R v Simon Slingsby [1995]

R v Simon Slingsby [1995]

R v Simon Slingsby [1995] Crim LR 570 addressed the issue of unforeseen physical injury resulting from consensual sexual activity and whether it constituted a criminal offence.

Simon, the defendant, engaged in consensual sexual activity with the victim, involving the penetration of her vagina and rectum with Simon's fingers, which accidentally led to her being cut by Simon's signet ring. Subsequently, the victim developed septicaemia and died. Simon was convicted of manslaughter under Sections 20 and 47 of the Offences Against the Person Act (OAPA).

The High Court allowed the appeal and quashed the conviction. Judge J held that the activity of inserting fingers into the vagina and rectum, when consent had been obtained, did not amount to an assault or an unlawful act. The judge emphasised that it would be contrary to legal principles to convict Simon of manslaughter when the injury inflicted was unforeseen and unintended.

This case stands in contrast to the earlier case of R v Brown [1994], where the defendants' intention was to inflict degrading violence on the victim. The distinction underscores the importance of consent and the nature of the acts performed in determining the criminal liability for unforeseen injuries arising from consensual activities.
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