Offences Against The Person Act 1861 (-)
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This document is for private study purposes only. It is likely not to reflect the law as it stands today. It may be incomplete, and some provisions are likely to have been repealed or amended, and new ones inserted.

Conspiring or soliciting to commit murder.

4. All persons who shall conspire, confederate, and agree to murder any person, whether he be a subject of Her Majesty or not, and whether he be within the Queen's dominions or not, and whosoever shall solicit, encourage, persuade, or endeavour to persuade, or shall propose to any person, to murder any other person, whether he be a subject of Her Majesty or not, and whether he be within the Queen's dominions or not, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for any term not more than ten and not less than three years,--or to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years, with or without hard labour.


Manslaughter.

5. Whosever shall be convicted of manslaughter shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for life ....


Murder or manslaughter abroad.

9. Where any murder or manslaughter shall be committed on land out of the United Kingdom, whether within the Queen's dominions or without, and whether the person killed were a subject of Her Majesty or not, every offence committed by any subject of Her Majesty in respect of any such case, whether the same shall amount to the offence of murder or of manslaughter, ... may be dealt with, inquired of, tried, determined, and punished ... in ... The United Kingdom Provided, that nothing herein contained shall prevent any person from being tried in any place out of ... Ireland for any murder or manslaughter committed out of the United Kingdom in the same manner as such person might have been tried before the passing of this Act.

Provision for the trial of murder and manslaughter where the death or cause of death only happens in England or Ireland.

10. Where any person being [criminally] stricken, poisoned, or otherwise hurt upon the sea, or at any place out of England or Ireland, shall die of such stroke, poisoning, or hurt in England or Ireland, or, being [criminally] stricken, poisoned, or otherwise hurt in any place in England or Ireland, shall die of such stroke, poisoning, or hurt upon the sea, or at any place out of England or Ireland, every offence committed in respect of any such case, whether the same shall amount to the offence of murder or of manslaughter, may be dealt with, inquired of, tried, determined, and punished ... in England or Ireland ....


16. A person who without lawful excuse makes to another a threat, intending that that other would fear it would be carried out, to kill that other or a third person shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction on indictment to imprisonment for a term not exceeding ten years.]


Impeding a person endeavouring to save himself or another from shipwreck.

17. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously prevent or impede any person, being on board of or having quitted any ship or vessel which shall be in distress, or wrecked, stranded, or cast on shore, in his endeavour to save his life, or shall unlawfully and maliciously prevent or impede any person in his endeavour to save the life of any such person as in this section first aforesaid, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for life ....


Wounding, with intent to do grievous bodily harm, or to resist apprehension.

18. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously by any means whatsoever wound or cause any grievous bodily harm to any person, ... with intent, ... to do some ... grievous bodily harm to any person, or with intent to resist or prevent the lawful apprehension or detainer of any person, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for life ....


Inflicting bodily injury, with or without weapon.

20. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously wound or inflict any grievous bodily harm upon any other person, either with or without any weapon or instrument, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude ....


Attempting to choke, &c., in order to commit or assist in the committing of any indictable offence.

21. Whosoever shall, by any means whatsoever, attempt to choke, suffocate, or strangle any other person, or shall by any means calculated to choke, suffocate, or strangle, attempt to render any other person insensible, unconscious, or incapable of resistance, with intent in any of such cases thereby to enable himself or any other person to commit, or with intent in any of such cases thereby to assist any other person in committing, any indictable offence shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for life ....

Using chloroform, &c., to commit or assist in the committing of any indictable offence.

22. Whosoever shall unlawfully apply or administer to or cause to be taken by, or attempt to apply or administer to or attempt to cause to be administered to or taken by, any person, any chloroform, laudanum, or other stupefying or overpowering drug, matter, or thing, with intent in any of such cases thereby to enable himself or any other person to commit, or with intent in any of such cases thereby to assist any other person in committing, any indictable offence, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for life ....

Maliciously administering poison, &c. so as to endanger life or inflict grievous bodily harm.

23. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously administer to or cause to be administered to or taken by any other person any poison or other destructive or noxious thing, so as thereby to endanger the life of such person, or so as thereby to inflict upon such person any grievous bodily harm, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding ten years ....


Maliciously administering poison, &c., with intent to injure, aggrieve, or annoy any other person.

24. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously administer to or cause to be administered to or taken by any other person any poison or other destructive or noxious thing, with intent to injure, aggrieve, or annoy such person, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude ....


Person charged with offence under sect.23 may be found guilty of misdemeanor under sect.24.

25. If, upon the trial of any person for any [offence under section 23 of this Act], the jury shall not be satisfied that such person is guilty thereof, but shall be satisfied that he is guilty of any misdemeanor in the last preceding section mentioned, then and in every such case the jury may acquit the accused of such [offence under section 23 of this Act], and find him guilty of such misdemeanor, and thereupon he shall be liable to be punished in the same manner as if convicted upon an indictment for such misdemeanor.

Not providing apprentices or servants with food, &c., whereby life is endangered.

26. Whosoever, being legally liable, either as a master or mistress, to provide for any apprentice or servant necessary food, clothing, or lodging, shall wilfully and without lawful excuse refuse or neglect to provide the same, or shall unlawfully and maliciously do or cause to be done any bodily harm to any such apprentice or servant, so that the life of such apprentice or servant shall be endangered, or the health of such apprentice or servant shall have been or shall be likely to be permanently injured, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable to be kept in penal servitude ....

Exposing child, whereby life is endangered.

27. Whosoever shall unlawfully abandon or expose any child, being under the age of two years, whereby the life of such child shall be endangered, or the health of such child shall have been or shall be likely to be permanently injured, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude ....

Causing bodily injury by gunpowder.

28. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously, by the explosion of gunpowder or other explosive substance, burn, maim, disfigure, disable, or do any grievous bodily harm to any person, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for life ... or to be imprisoned ....

Causing gunpowder to explode, or sending to any person an explosive substance, or throwing corrosive fluid on a person, with intent to do grievous bodily harm.

29. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously cause any gunpowder or other explosive substance to explode, or send or deliver to or cause to be taken or received by any person any explosive substance or any other dangerous or noxious thing, or put or lay at any place, or cast or throw at or upon or otherwise apply to any person, any corrosive fluid or any destructive or explosive substance, with intent in any of the cases aforesaid to burn, maim, disfigure, or disable any person, or to do some grievous bodily harm to any person, shall, whether any bodily injury be effected or not, be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for life ... or to be imprisoned ....

Placing gunpowder near a building, &c., with intent to do bodily injury to any person.

30. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously place or throw in, into, against, or near any building, ship, or vessel any gunpowder or other explosive substance, with intent to do any bodily injury to any person, shall, whether or not any explosion take place, and whether or not any bodily injury be effected, be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding fourteen years ..., or to be imprisoned ....

Setting spring guns, &c., with intent to inflict grievous bodily harm.

31. Whosoever shall set or place, or cause to be set or placed, any spring gun, man trap, or other engine calculated to destroy human life or inflict grievous bodily harm, with the intent that the same or whereby the same may destroy or inflict grievous bodily harm upon a trespasser or other person coming in contact therewith, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude ...; and whosoever shall knowingly and wilfully permit any such spring gun, man trap, or other engine which may have been set or placed in any place then being in or afterwards coming into his possession or occupation by some other person to continue so set or placed, shall be deemed to have set and placed such gun, trap, or engine with such intent as aforesaid: Provided, that nothing in this section contained shall extend to make it illegal to set or place any gin or trap such as may have been or may be usually set or placed with the intent of destroying vermin: Provided also, that nothing in this section shall be deemed to make it unlawful to set or place, or cause to be set or placed, or to be continued set or placed, from sunset to sunrise, any spring gun, man trap, or other engine which shall be set or placed, or caused or continued to be set or placed, in a dwelling house, for the protection thereof.

Placing wood, &c. on railway with intent to endanger passengers.

32. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously put or throw upon or across any railway any wood, stone, or other matter or thing, or shall unlawfully and maliciously take up, remove, or displace any rail, sleeper, or other matter or thing belonging to any railway, or shall unlawfully and maliciously turn, move, or divert any points or other machinery belonging to any railway, or shall unlawfully and maliciously make or show, hide or remove, any signal or light upon or near to any railway, or shall unlawfully and maliciously do or cause to be done any other matter or thing, with intent, in any of the cases aforesaid, to endanger the safety of any person travelling or being upon such railway, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for life ... or to be imprisoned ....

Casting stone, &c. upon a railway carriage, with intent to endanger the safety of any person therein.

33. Whosoever shall unlawfully and maliciously throw, or cause to fall or strike, at, against, into, or upon any engine, tender, carriage, or truck used upon any railway, any wood, stone, or other matter or thing, with intent to injure or endanger the safety of any person being in or upon such engine, tender, carriage, or truck, or in or upon any other engine, tender, carriage, or truck of any train of which such first-mentioned engine, tender, carriage, or truck shall form part, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for life ....

Doing or omitting anything so as to endanger passengers by railway.

34. Whosoever, by any unlawful act, or by any wilful omission or neglect, shall endanger or cause to be endangered the safety of any person conveyed or being in or upon a railway, or shall aid or assist therein, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years .

Drivers of carriages injuring persons by furious driving.

35. Whosoever, having the charge of any carriage or vehicle, shall by wanton or furious driving or racing, or other wilful misconduct, or by wilful neglect, do or cause to be done any bodily harm to any person whatsoever, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years ....

Obstructing or assaulting a clergyman or other minister in the discharge of his duties.

36. Whosoever shall, by threats or force, obstruct or prevent or endeavour to obstruct or prevent, any clergyman or other minister in or from celebrating divine service or otherwise officiating in any church, chapel, meeting house, or other place of divine worship, or in or from the performance of his duty in the lawful burial of the dead in any churchyard or other burial place, or shall strike or offer any violence to, or shall, upon any civil process, or under the pretence of executing any civil process, arrest any clergyman or other minister who is engaged in, or to the knowledge of the offender is about to engage in, any of the rites or duties in this section aforesaid, or who to the knowledge of the offender shall be going to perform the same or returning from the performance thereof, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years ....

Assaulting a magistrate, &c. on account of his preserving wreck.

37. Whosoever shall assault and strike or wound any magistrate, officer, or other person whatsoever lawfully authorized, in or on account of the exercise of his duty in or concerning the preservation of any vessel in distress, or of any vessel, goods, or effects wrecked, stranded, or cast on shore, or lying under water, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding seven years ....

Assaults with intent to obstruct the sale of grain, or its free passage.

39. Whosoever shall beat, or use any violence or threat of violence to any person, with intent to deter or hinder him from buying, selling, or otherwise disposing of, or to compel him to buy, sell, or otherwise dispose of, any wheat or other grain, flour, meal, malt, or potatoes, in any market or other place, or shall beat or use any such violence or threat to any person having the care or charge of any wheat or other grain, flour, meal, malt, or potatoes, whilst on the way to or from any city, market town, or other place, with intent to stop the conveyance of the same, shall on conviction thereof before two justices of the peace be liable to be imprisoned ... in [prison] for any term not exceeding three months:

Provided, that no person who shall be punished for any such offence by virtue of this section shall be punished for the same offence by virtue of any other law whatsoever.

Assaults on seamen, &c.

40. Whosoever shall unlawfully and with force hinder or prevent any seaman, keelman, or caster from working at or exercising his lawful trade, business, or occupation, or shall beat or use any violence to any such person with intent to hinder or prevent him from working at or exercising the same, shall on conviction thereof before two justices of the peace be liable to be imprisoned ... In [prison] for any term not exceeding three months: Provided, that no person who shall be punished for any such offence by reason of this section shall be punished for the same offence by virtue of any other law whatsoever.

42. Any person who unlawfully assaults or beats any other person shall be guilty of an offence under this section and shall, upon complaint made by or on behalf of the party aggrieved or by a police officer or constable, be liable on summary conviction to imprisonment for a term not exceeding three months or to a fine not exceeding [{26}#50] in addition to any costs which the court may order him to pay.]

43. When any person shall be charged before two justices of the peace with an assault or battery upon any male child whose age shall not in the opinion of such justices exceed fourteen years, or upon any female, either upon the complaint of the party aggrieved or otherwise, the said justices, if the assault or battery is of such an aggravated nature that it cannot in their opinion be sufficiently punished under the provisions herein-before contained as to common assaults and batteries, may proceed to hear and determine the same in a summary way, and, if the same be proved, may convict the person accused; and every such offender shall be liable to be imprisoned in [prison] ... for any period not exceeding six months, or to pay a fine not exceeding (together with costs) the sum of [%pound;100], and in default of payment to be imprisoned in [prison] for any period not exceeding six months, unless such fine and costs be sooner paid ....

These provisions not to apply to certain cases.

46. Provided, that in case the justices ... shall be of opinion that the same is, from any ... circumstances, a fit subject for a prosecution by indictment, they shall abstain from any adjudication thereupon, and shall deal with the case in all respects in the same manner as if they had no authority finally to hear and determine the same: Provided also, that nothing herein contained shall authorize any justices to hear and determine any case of assault or battery in which any question shall arise as to the title to any lands, tenements, or hereditaments, or any interest therein, or accruing therefrom, or as to any bankruptcy or insolvency or any execution under the process of any court of justice.

Assault occasioning bodily harm.

47. Whosoever shall be convicted upon an indictment of any assault occasioning actual bodily harm shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude ...; and whosoever shall be convicted upon an indictment for a common assault shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding one year ....

Rape.

48. Whosoever shall be convicted of the crime of rape shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable . . . to be kept in penal servitude for life ....

Indecent assault upon a female.

52. Whosoever shall be convicted of any indecent assault upon any female ... shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years ....

Fraudulent abduction of a girl under age against the will of her father, &c.

53. Where any woman of any age shall have any interest, whether legal or equitable, present or future, absolute, conditional, or contingent, in any real or personal estate, or shall be a presumptive heiress or coheiress, or presumptive next of kin, or one of the presumptive next of kin, to any one having such interest, whosoever shall, from motives of lucre, take away or detain such woman against her will, with intent to marry or carnally know her, or to cause her to be married or carnally known by any other person, and whosoever shall fraudulently ..., take away, or detain such woman, being under the age of [eighteen] years, out of the possession and against the will of her father or mother, or of any other person having the lawful care or charge of her, with intent to marry or carnally know her, or to cause her to be married or carnally known by any other person, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding fourteen years ....

Forcible abduction of any woman with intent to marry or carnally know her, &c.

54. Whosoever shall, by force, take away or detain against her will any woman, of any age, with intent to marry or carnally know her, or to cause her to be married or carnally known by any other person, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding fourteen years ....

Abduction of a girl under sixteen years of age.

55. Whosoever shall unlawfully take or cause to be taken any unmarried girl, being under the age of sixteen years out of the possession and against the will of her father or mother, or of any other person having the lawful care or charge of her, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years ....

Child-stealing, or receiving stolen child.

56. Whosoever shall unlawfully, either by force or fraud, lead or take away, or decoy or entice away or detain, any child under the age of fourteen years, with intent to deprive any parent, guardian, or other person having the lawful care or charge of such child of the possession of such child, or with intent to steal any article upon or about the person of such child, to whomsoever such article may belong, and whosoever shall, with any such intent, receive or harbour any such child, knowing the same to have been, by force or fraud, led, taken, decoyed, enticed away, or detained, as in this section before mentioned, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding seven years ..., or to be imprisoned ...: Provided, that no person who shall have claimed any right to the possession of such child, or shall be the mother or shall have claimed to be the father of an illegitimate child, shall be liable to be prosecuted by virtue hereof on account of the getting possession of such child, or taking such child out of the possession of any person having the lawful charge thereof.

57. Whosoever, being married, shall marry any other person during the life of the former husband or wife, whether the second marriage shall have taken place in England or Ireland or elsewhere, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding seven years; Provided, that nothing in this section contained shall extend to any second marriage contracted elsewhere than in England and Ireland by any other than a subject of Her Majesty, or to any person marrying a second time whose husband or wife shall have been continually absent from such person for the space of seven years then last past, and shall not have been known by such person to be living within that time, or shall extend to any person who, at the time of such second marriage, shall have been divorced from the bond of the first marriage, or to any person whose former marriage shall have been declared void by the sentence of any court of competent jurisdiction.

Nothing herein contained to extend to second marriages in the cases herein mentioned.

Administering drugs or using instruments to procure abortion.

58. Every woman, being with child, who, with intent to procure her own miscarriage, shall unlawfully administer to herself any poison or other noxious thing, or shall unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent, and whosoever, with intent to procure the miscarriage of any woman whether she be or be not with child, shall unlawfully administer to her or cause to be taken by her any poison or other noxious thing, or unlawfully use any instrument or other means whatsoever with the like intent, shall be guilty of felony, and being convicted thereof shall be liable to be kept in penal servitude for life ....


Procuring drugs, &c. to cause abortion.

59. Whosoever shall unlawfully supply or procure any poison or other noxious thing, or any instrument or thing whatsoever, knowing that the same is intended to be unlawfully used or employed with intent to procure the miscarriage of any woman, whether she be or be not with child, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude ....


Concealing the birth of a child.

60. If any woman shall be delivered of a child, every person who shall, by any secret disposition of the dead body of the said child, whether such child died before, at, or after its birth, endeavour to conceal the birth thereof, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years ...:


Sodomy and bestiality.

61.Whosoever shall be convicted of the abominable crime of buggery, committed either with mankind or with any animal, shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for life ....


62. Whosoever shall attempt to commit the said abominable crime, or shall be guilty of any assault with intent to commit the same, or of any indecent assault upon any male person, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable ... to be kept in penal servitude for any term not exceeding ten years ....


Carnal knowledge defined.

63. Whenever, upon the trial for any offence punishable under this Act, it may be necessary to prove carnal knowledge, it shall not be necessary to prove the actual emission of seed in order to constitute a carnal knowledge, but the carnal knowledge shall be deemed complete upon proof of penetration only.

64. Whosoever shall knowingly have in his possession, or make or manufacture, any gunpowder, explosive substance, or any dangerous or noxious thing, or any machine, engine, instrument, or thing, with intent by means thereof to commit, or for the purpose of enabling any other person to commit, any of the felonies in this Act mentioned shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and being convicted thereof shall be liable, at the discretion of the court, to be imprisoned for any term not exceeding two years....

Making or having gunpowder, &c. with intent to commit any felony against this Act.

65. Any justice of the peace of any county or place in which any such gunpowder, or other explosive, dangerous, or noxious substance or thing, or any such machine, engine, instrument or thing, is suspected to be made, kept, or carried for the purpose of being used in committing any of the felonies in this Act mentioned, upon reasonable cause assigned upon oath by any person, may issue a warrant under his hand and seal for searching, in the daytime, any house, mill, magazine, storehouse, warehouse, shop, cellar, yard, wharf, or other place, or any carriage, waggon, cart, ship, boat, or vessel, in which the same is suspected to be made, kept, or carried for such purpose as herein-before mentioned; and every person acting in the execution of any such warrant shall have, for seizing, removing to proper places, and detaining all such gunpowder, explosive, dangerous, or noxious substances, machines, engines, instruments, or things, found upon such search, which he shall have good cause to suspect to be intended to be used in committing any such offence, and the barrels, packages, cases and other receptacles in which the same shall be, the same powers and protections which are given to persons searching for unlawful quantities of gunpowder under the warrant of a justice by the Act passed in the session holden in the twenty-third and twenty-fourth years of the reign of Her present Majesty, chapter one hundred and thirty-nine, intituled, "An Act to amend the law concerning the making, keeping, and carriage of gunpowder and compositions of an explosive nature, and concerning the manufacture, sale, and use of fireworks."

68. All indictable offences mentioned in this Act which shall be committed within the jurisdiction of the Admiralty of England or Ireland shall be ... liable to the same punishments, as if they had been committed upon the land in England or Ireland, ....

Offences committed within the jurisdiction of the Admiralty.

71. Whenever any person shall be convicted of any indictable misdemeanor punishable under this Act, the court may, if it shall think fit, in addition to or in lieu of any punishment by this Act authorized, ... require him to enter into his own recognizances, and to find sureties, both or either, for keeping the peace and being of good behaviour; ...: Provided, that no person shall be imprisoned for not finding sureties under this clause for any period exceeding one year.


25 November 2012
http://www.swarb.co.uk/acts/1861OffencesAgainstThePersonAct.html ver 9 July 2010