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Necessity (duress of circumstance)

This defence is available where an accused believes, on reasonable grounds, that commission of the crime charged was necessary in all the circumstancesin order to remove an imminentthreat of death or serious injury to themselves or another. The response must be proportionate to the danger and there are both subjective and objective considerations when assessing this defence [see: Bayley v Police (2007) 99 SASR 413].

The defence of necessity is approached by courts with considerable caution.

Fortifications  :  Last Revised: Tue Jul 28th 2015
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