Skip to main content
Recklessness and criminal negligence
University of Toronto Law Journal (1982)
  • Eric Colvin, University of Saskatchewan
[extract] Examination of mens rea has traditionally focussed on the concepts of intention and of knowledge as an aspect of intention. Indeed, ‘criminal intent’ is sometimes used as a synonym for mens rea in general. The alternative of recklessness has received much less attention. As the English Court of Appeal recently said, ‘the whole concept of recklessness has developed comparatively lately’. In Williams’ view, it was only with the 1976 decision of the House of Lords in D.P.P. v Morgan that it became settled that mens rea as an implied requirement in English law means intention or recklessness. The statement of Dickson J in Sault Ste. Marie may be read as an affirmation of this principle in Canadian law.
  • recklessness,
  • criminal negligence,
  • mens rea,
  • Canada
Publication Date
January 1, 1982
Citation Information
Eric Colvin. "Recklessness and criminal negligence" University of Toronto Law Journal (1982)
Available at: