Criminology, Social Law & Commercial Law 

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Assessment Task

1 (a)

Criminology

“Serial killers are the product of nature: people say that they are born to kill. But, their acts can equally be blamed on environmental and other factors.”

Briefly discuss this statement. Always give reasons (and quote a relevant study or authority, if any) for what you say.

(Word Limit: 750 words)

1 (b)

Criminal Procedure and Evidence

Giles is a farmer and he has a problem with sparrows eating his crops so he decides to use his high powered rifle to kill some of the sparrows. Giles aims his rifle at a sparrow and fires -the bullet misses but hits the back rotor of a low flying helicopter causing it to crash with the result the pilot is killed. A rambler witnesses what happened and the police are called to Giles’ farm house.
PC Alexander and PC Clay arrive at Giles’ farmhouse and immediately handcuff him and put him in the police car and take him to the police station.

At the police station Giles tells the custody officer he wants his wife to be informed about his arrest. The custody officer replies that he will soon be interviewed and that his wife will be given the information after the interview.

Although Giles has a weak right leg, which he tells PC Clay about, he is not allowed to sit down during the interview. Instead, PC Clay tells him: “Just admit that you killed the helicopter pilot in cold blood and you can sit down”. Giles then says: “Okay, I killed him alright although it was an accident”.

Later at his trial, before Giles is convicted of murder, the Judge directs the Jury as follows: “Based on the evidence you have heard, if you think the accused did kill the victim with malice aforethought, then you must return a verdict of murder”.

Discuss the issues of criminal procedure and evidence in this scenario.

(Word limit: 750 words)

2. SOCIAL LAW

(a)

Medical Law

Twenty-seven-year-old Lala is four months pregnant but is still smoking like a chimney as well as regularly drinking alcohol and taking other drugs. Her social worker wants to have her committed to a mental hospital or prosecuted for endangering the life of the fetus (the unborn baby).
Her cousin, Formosa, who has been receiving treatment at Curemall Hospital for a back problem, wants to see her medical records but does not know how to go about it.

Advise Lala and Formosa as to their rights. (Word limit: 750 words)

2 (b)

Family Law

“’Family’ is presently a term that is of limited legal significance…[M]uch effort has been made in attempting a legal definition of ‘marriage’, ‘parent’ and ‘parenthood’; but relatively few cases have defined ‘a family’. However, following the Human Rights Act 1998 and the importance of the right to respect for family life, the concept of family will grow in significance.” (per Herring, Family Law, 4th ed at p.2)

Discuss the issues that can be used to help provide a definition of the family at law.
(Word limit: 750 words)

3.

COMMERCIAL LAW

Bagshott Snyde and Scrivener Solicitors LLP Southampton
Attendance Note 15 January 2016 14.30 – 16.30
Client Macrosoft PLC

Partner Hugh Scrivener (PH) attending new client, Mr Thomas Dore, Managing Director of Macrosoft PLC at our offices in Southampton.

It has recently come to the client’s attention that a large counterfeiting operation of the DVD’s of their computer operating system software, Winblos 10 was recently discovered on 7 January 2016. This appears to be centred on the South Coast of Engand. Specifically the source appears to be a factory somewhere in Shirley, Southampton. This software has managed to find its way into the retail chain and a number of retail outlets on the south coast of England have been found selling these counterfeit copies.

Client has advised us Macrosoft own the UK registered trade mark 2034040 “Winblos 10” registered for computer software. I advised client that the registered Trade Mark gives client exclusive rights which we should seek to enforce immediately and furthermore the software itself would be entitled to separate protection itself via Copyright law which again could form the basis of a civil legal action. I also raised the possibility of criminal offences arising from the counterfeiting, for which local Trading standards could be informed with a view to enforcing those laws.

(a)

Intellectual Property Question

(word limit: 750 words).

You are a trainee solicitor in the firm of Bagshott Snyde and Scrivener. One of the partners of the firm Mr Hugh Scrivener asks you to do some research on the precise law applicable concerning the problem raised by the attendance note. He wants advice on the following points:

1. What specific Intellectual property rights exist here and give us the right to take legal action in against the sellers of this software, and presuming they can be found, the illegal manufacturers ?

2. Do any criminal acts result from either the actions of the retailers or manufacturers of the computer software ? If so, what are the maximum penalties for such acts ?

(b) Sale of Goods Question (word limit: 750 words).

Another client of Bagshott, Snyde and Scrivener is Solent Software Ltd, a company that supplies software disks to the general public. The company has advised Mr Dore that they recently purchased a large quantity of the counterfeit disks from a supplier in Shirley. Solent Software were unaware that the disks were counterfeit and also complain that when the disks are loaded onto a computer they fail to work.

Please advise Hugh Scrivener what rights under sale of goods law Solent Software Ltd has against the supplier who sold the disks to them

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