Criminal Law: The Doctrine of Joint Enterprise Liability



The UK Supreme Court’s ruling in the case of Jogee seems to suggest so in stating that the secondary party’s foresight that the principal might kill with the necessary mens rea for murder is only evidence from which the jury may infer that the secondary party possessed the mens area for murder.

The principles in Jogee are to be contrasted with those in Chan Wing Siu [1984] 3 All ER 877 in which Sir Robin Cook approved of the direction given by the trial judge to the jury: “You may convict of murder if you come to the conclusion that the accused contemplated that one of his companions might use the knife to cause serious bodily injury on one of the occupants” .

Sir Robin Cooke went on to state that “where a man lends himself to a criminal enterprise knowing that the potentially murderous weapons are to be carried , and in the event they are in fact used by his partner with an intent sufficient for murder , he should not escape the consequences by relying on a belief that their use was unlikely.’

Chan Wing Siu had to do with three robbers, each of whom were armed with a knife, but only one killed the victim.