Strict Liability, Justice, and Proportionality*

Douglas Husak

in The Philosophy of Criminal Law

Published in print March 2010 | ISBN: 9780199585038
Published online May 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780191723476 | DOI:
 							Strict Liability, Justice, and Proportionality*

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This chapter tries to identify whether and under what conditions strict liability in the penal law is morally objectionable or unobjectionable. It argues that liability without fault for one or more material elements often is worrisome because it results in disproportionate punishments: punishments in excess of the desert of the offender. This position is illustrated by an extended critical discussion of the strict liability drug homicide statutes that have been enacted in New Jersey as well as in other jurisdictions throughout the United States.

Keywords: strict liability; punishment; proportionality; mens rea; drug offenses; causation; homicide

Chapter.  13174 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

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