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tlr online
24-05-11, 20:55
A BRITISH Airways captain who killed his millionairess wife before burying her in a pre-prepared grave has been acquitted of her murder but jailed for 26 years after admitting manslaughter.

Robert Brown, 47, thought he had been "stitched up" by a prenuptial agreement which would have cut him out of his estranged wife's fortune.

http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/3597896/Killer-cleared-of-murder-but-jailed-for-26yrs.html

So if you have good reason to murder someone you can have your sentenced reduced to manslaughter?

Phlip
24-05-11, 20:59
Woah his face genuinely gave me chills! :(

jajay119
24-05-11, 21:01
Erm yes, if it's accidental. This was predetermined and done out of greed, it wasn't manslaughter at all. I suppose this was in the UK?

Mad Tony
24-05-11, 21:15
Think it's to do with "diminished responsibility". That's what it says in the article. The legal system here is really messed up.

Rai
24-05-11, 21:26
Manslaughter? Are they trying to be funny? So he felt 'stitched up' by a pre-nup, so decides to bump off his wife? Oh boohoo. You do not pre dig a grave and claw a woman to death with the children in the next room if it's just manslaughter. 26 years is not long enough. That poor woman lost her life over a pre-nup, and those kids have lost their mother - and their father in one go.

Cochrane
24-05-11, 21:36
I just love it when a sentence comes along that is less than the full sentence people think should be applied (usually life, or for that matter sometimes death), and then everyone screams "our judges are incompetent! Our laws are too lax!". Not just in Britain, by the way, that happens a lot in Germany as well, and I guess most other countries too.

Fact is, the media never give a full account of what happened in the court room, and consequently it is completely impossible to tell whether something went wrong based on a newspaper article, in particular a newspaper article where the headline is in Impact and has a font size of 50 pixels.

The implication here is that he made some sort of defense that said that he was not of fully sound memory, which means he no longer fulfills the commonly accepted definition of a murderer. Is that appropriate or not? That is completely impossible to tell from the article. He did have something to gain, but that does not mean that it was a carefully planned crime. He let his children watch, after all, and forgot to clean up his family home afterwards. The grave was already dug, but the argument that this was done much before, and not in direct connection to the crime, seems sound.

His sentence of 26 years is more than the fifteen years minimum that an english or welsh judge can set for life imprisonment, so they don't let him off lightly. The decision whether it was murder or manslaughter is really just a procedural thing, and I don't think it is a good reason to get outraged about.

Tombraiderx08
24-05-11, 22:09
Because that's obviously not premeditated at all.

Really?!

Ward Dragon
24-05-11, 22:12
I don't know the details of what happened in the court and the article isn't precisely clear either. Was he found not guilty of murder by a jury and then convicted of manslaughter instead? Or did he take a plea deal where he plead guilty to manslaughter in exchange for not being charged with murder?

The crime that the article described sounded to me like second-degree murder. I could believe he was emotional and didn't really plan it out (not that I buy his pre-dug grave story XD) so I wouldn't be too upset that they didn't charge him with first-degree (premeditated) murder. However it's my understanding that manslaughter is an accidental killing, which this clearly was not.

In any case, a murder sentence is usually 25 to life anyway so I guess the important thing is that he serves the sentence and is kept away from his children. He's already traumatized them enough as it is.

Cochrane
24-05-11, 22:31
I guess manslaughter depends a lot on the jurisdiction. In Germany, for example, pre-meditated manslaughter is absolutely possible, as long as the crime does not meet any of the the murder criteria (things like avarice, insidiously, to fulfill sexual urges, to hide another crime and a few others). Looking at Wikipedia, it seems like the common law countries tend to define manslaughter more narrowly and anything else as murder, but voluntary manslaughter still applies for provocation, diminished responsibility and a few others.

Underworld2008
24-05-11, 22:43
That's right by me! I'm always in that park :|

Mad Tony
24-05-11, 22:50
I just love it when a sentence comes along that is less than the full sentence people think should be applied (usually life, or for that matter sometimes death), and then everyone screams "our judges are incompetent! Our laws are too lax!". Not just in Britain, by the way, that happens a lot in Germany as well, and I guess most other countries too.But they are. This case isn't really a good example of it but there are a lot out there.

Ward Dragon
24-05-11, 22:56
I guess manslaughter depends a lot on the jurisdiction. In Germany, for example, pre-meditated manslaughter is absolutely possible, as long as the crime does not meet any of the the murder criteria (things like avarice, insidiously, to fulfill sexual urges, to hide another crime and a few others). Looking at Wikipedia, it seems like the common law countries tend to define manslaughter more narrowly and anything else as murder, but voluntary manslaughter still applies for provocation, diminished responsibility and a few others.

Ah, that makes sense. I kind of figured the definitions might be different in other countries. That's why I think it's better to look at the sentence and see if it fits the crime regardless of what the crime is called. I think 26 years is acceptable for what he did, assuming he serves the entire sentence.

Edit: Oh, and I'm also assuming that the UK has similar laws to the US in that a criminal can't profit from a crime. The inheritance should go to the kids and the killer shouldn't be able to touch it at all.

moodydog
24-05-11, 23:25
Are sentences ever extended? If you were sentenced to 26 years in prison, and some time into it, the case is reopened...

Cochrane
24-05-11, 23:36
Are sentences ever extended? If you were sentenced to 26 years in prison, and some time into it, the case is reopened...

Human rights provisions generally prevent re-opening a case where someone was already convicted or acquitted, unless really, really good new evidence has appeared. Given that this guy has already confessed, I think that is very unlikely.

Ward Dragon
25-05-11, 04:05
Are sentences ever extended? If you were sentenced to 26 years in prison, and some time into it, the case is reopened...

I've only ever heard of sentences being reduced, not extended.

Autolycus
25-05-11, 08:31
That's clearly murder without a doubt, the jury must have been a set of idiots to come up with manslaughter. The only saving grace is the judge recognized it was more. 26 years nowhere fits the crime British justice being in the state it is will allow this animal to be locked up for 13 years and then spend the rest of his sentence back among law abiding citizens, free to murder again.

British justice, there to protect people who break the law.

Cochrane
25-05-11, 09:58
Fun exercise: What is the legal definition of murder and what is the legal definition of homicide, both under english law? No looking up beforehand!

OK, got it? Now look up what it actually says. I think at least a few people in this thread will be surprised.



As for the justice system: Contrary to popular belief, its job is not to lock everyone up for the longest time possible. Justice is quite different from revenge, eye-for-an-eye or other.

tampi
25-05-11, 10:16
Homicide is distinguished from murder by his lack of malice, cruelty or other circumstances, and generally miserable reasons not kill or vacuous, as the promise of remuneration or reward, or in general, the purpose of obtaining profit killer activity.

From wilkipedia.

Then, as this is clearly a murder because he got profit.


The first thing you study if you want to be a lawyer is "Roman law".
From the moment our legal system is based by laws of a time so unfair, classist and exclusionary as the Roman Empire, everything is a bit absurd.

Cochrane
25-05-11, 10:31
According to Wikipedia, under english law, voluntary manslaughter (which is what he was convicted of):

Voluntary manslaughter occurs when the defendant kills with malice aforethought (an intention to kill or cause grievous bodily harm), but one of those partial defences which reduce murder to manslaughter applies (these consist of mitigating circumstances which reduce the defendant's culpability). The original mitigating factors were provocation and chance medley which existed at common law, but the former has been abolished by statute, the latter has been held no longer to exist[1] and new defences have been created by statute.
The Homicide Act 1957 now provides two defences which may be raised to allow the court to find the accused guilty of voluntary manslaughter: diminished responsibility and suicide pact. The Coroners and Justice Act 2009 creates the defence of "loss of control".

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manslaughter_in_English_law#Voluntary_manslaughter

TRLegendLuver
25-05-11, 10:33
Sad thing is, this happens all the time. Murderers get away all the time, even rapists and pedifials. Doesn't suprise me. :pi:

Mad Tony
25-05-11, 10:47
Sad thing is, this happens all the time. Murderers get away all the time, even rapists and pedifials. Doesn't suprise me. :pi:They don't get away with it, but often the sentences are too leniant.

tampi
25-05-11, 11:00
The Homicide Act 1957...
The Coroners and Justice Act 2009 creates the defence of "loss of control"

lol that's cool!

Thus we can see how the OP speaks of today, ie 2011, with a new sentence.
Gradually, the murder seems to be enabled by new exculpatory laws.
Finally it may be positive that all kill ourselves. (sarcastic)



ok nevermind.:ohn:

ggctuk
25-05-11, 20:46
The way I see it: The judge cannot overturn the jury (as sentencing is up to him), so when they found him not guilty of murder, he passed for the next best thing. Sad thing is, he'll probably do only half that time.

cezy rockeru
26-05-11, 05:48
That's creepy.

Spong
26-05-11, 06:06
^What's creepy? Or are you just spamming?

Apathetic
26-05-11, 06:26
^What's creepy?

You, obviously.