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The Appropriate Limits of Legal Speech P.1

   
The Appropriate Limits of Legal Speech P.1

The Situation:

Person A wants person B to die. Person B is in a relationship with person C and is having an affair with person D. Person A knows about the affair and believes that person C will kill person B if they find out. Person A brings proof of the affair to person C. Person C kills persons B and D.

Edit 1: Person A is not asking Person C to commit a violent act, or suggesting that they do so. They are informing person C of the affair in the hope that Person B will be killed.

The Discussion:

Should person A be punished for their actions? Why and what is an appropriate punishment/factors that affect an appropriate punishment? This thread is not intended to discuss punishments/reasoning for persons B, C, or D, only for person A.

If person A's intent on providing the information is found out beyond reasonable doubt then they could be charged with a crime. However, that is nearly impossible to prove short of them leaving a paper trail or a confession on their part. Technically they committed murder using another as their weapon. I may have to research, but I vaguely recall something like this happening before.

For the record the speech itself is legal, the motive for murder not so much.

If your 'weapon' has free will that is applicable to the situation (as opposed to say a hypothetical AI bomb which can post to the internet but can't override it's detonation sequence) then you did not commit murder, at worst you incited violence (assuming the murder was committed violently)

@Yoshirou: The 'beyond a reasonable doubt' part is reserved for the conviction, not the charge.

@silveroak: For clarity in reference to the OP, incitement to violence is generally a chargeable offence of its own.

To clarify: Person A is not asking Person C to commit a violent act, or suggesting that they do so. They are informing person C of the affair in the hope that Person B will be killed. Does this count as incitement to violence?

Person A is not responsible in any way. He is simply telling a truth to a person. Person C, by his actions, is solely responsible. Whether Person A "knew" Person C would react in a certain way is not relevant.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ComicsFan View Post
Person A is not responsible in any way. He is simply telling a truth to a person. Person C, by his actions, is solely responsible. Whether Person A "knew" Person C would react in a certain way is not relevant.
It's not whether or not they KNEW, in this case I would say, but whether or not they INTENDED.

Regardless of intent, it doesn't matter. Wishing someone else to die is having intent for that death, it doesn't make them legally responsible for the death.

In this case, the person did not ask, say or in any way infer that Person C kill Person B, so he's not responsible.

Wishing someone to die does not carry responsibility if they should die.
Taking action with the intent that it should lead to their deaths, on the other hand, does and should carry some responsibility.

I think I agree with ComicsFan, simply informing Person C of the truth does not make person A responsible. I think that would require some amount of manipulation, persuasion or coercion, not simply informing of fact.




 

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