R v Dudley & Stephens The Facts (Pt. 1) 19 th May 1884 A ship set sail from Southampton, England to Sydney, Australia Four crew members: Dudley (Captain) Stephens Brooks Parker (Cabin boy) Bad weather – ship sunk
R v Dudley & Stephens The Facts (Pt. 2) Stranded on lifeboat for 12 days Limited rations and provisions Decided to kill Parker Fed on his body for 4 days Later the remaining crew were saved, but were charged with murder
R v Dudley & Stephens The Issues (Pt. 1) Moral and ethical issues Survival Cannabilism Jesus and the Bible teachings “ To preserve one's life is generally speaking a duty, but it may be the plainest and the highest duty to sacrifice it. [...] It is not correct, therefore, to say that there is any absolute or unqualified necessity to preserve one's life. ”
R v Dudley & Stephens The Issues (Pt. 2) Naval customs and practices Rules of the sea Cabin boy & Parker ’ s family Policy issues Dangerous precedent? Promotion of values
R v Dudley & Stephens The Issues (Pt. 3) Legal issue Defence of necessity – rejected by Lord Coleridge Defence of consent Sentencing issues Original life sentence Public opinion and discontent – 6 months
Re A (Conjoined Twins) The Facts (Pt. 1) Jodie and Mary Conjoined by the spine Jodie healthy Mary’s hearts and lungs Mary relies on Jodie for oxygen and blood
Re A (Conjoined Twins) The Facts (Pt. 2) The problem: Mary sapping strength Life expectancy - 6 months The doctor’s solution: surgery The problem with the solution: Jodie would survive, but Mary would definitely die
Re A (Conjoined Twins) The Facts (Pt. 3) The doctors asked the court for permission “Save Jodie but murder Mary. I put it starkly but that may be what you are inviting the court to do” - Lord Justice Ward Question: Will the doctors commit murder?
Re A (Conjoined Twins) The Issues (Pt. 1) Moral and ethical issues Parent’s religion Medical practices Conflict of duty Lesser of two evils
Re A (Conjoined Twins) The Issues (Pt. 2) Policy issues Sanctity of life Dangerous precedent? Legal issues Self-defence Duress of circumstances Defence of necessity - precedent of Dudley v Stephens Final decision: Family or Court or Doctors?