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Law in Focus

The Judgment of the Supreme Court of Appeal in the Pistorius case

The conviction of Oscar Pistorius for committing culpable homicide in relation to the shooting of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp made worldwide news.

In this video Professor Christopher Forsyth reflects on his previous comments about the original conviction, and describes how the Supreme Court of Appeal interpreted the South African law on intent to kill. Although the Court complimented Ms Justice Thokozile Masipa on her handling of the case under intense media scrutiny, they reversed her decision (as Professor Forsyth originally suggested they might), and and replaced the verdict with one of murder.

John Worboys: Judicial Review of the Parole Board

In January 2018 it was reported that the Parole Board had approved the release of John Worboys, the so-called ‘Black Cab Rapist’. Worboys had been incarcerated since his conviction for a number of sexual offences in March 2009, and it was believed that he was responsible for many attacks over which he was not charged.

The announcement of the decision caused much public unrest, and led to scrutiny of the Parole Board’s decision and suggestions that it should be subject to judicial review. In this video, Professor Christopher Forsyth considers the situation, and the likelihood of any review being successful.

The Mental Element in Murder: Reflections on the Pistorius Case

The trial of Oscar Pistorius for the murder of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp aroused worldwide media interest. From the beginning Pistorius claimed that he had no intent to kill Reeva because when he fired the fatal shots her he thought he was firing at an intruder. And so whether he had the necessary intent to kill became a crucial issue in his trial.

In this video Professor Christopher Forsyth describes the South African law on intent to kill and explains how it differs from the relevant English law. In particular he explains how South African law rejects all forms of “transferred malice” and the significance of this for the Pistorius trial...

Although Ms Justice Thokozile Masipa in her judgment gives an exemplary account of the South African law, there is a curious departure from orthodoxy in her application of the law which may render her judgment vulnerable to appeal by the prosecution.


The Development of Classic Administrative Law and Modern Threats to it

Some Recent Developments in Judicial Review

The Recent Reform of the Application for Judicial Review in England: Lessons for Hong Kong?

Panel Debates

The Constitutional Foundations of Judicial Review: CULS Panel event

This debate with Professor Paul Craigh was held at the Faculty of Law on 1 February 2019, hosted by the Cambridge University Law Society.