Australian Capital Territory Current Acts

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Mistake of fact—strict liability

    (1)     A person is not criminally responsible for an offence that has a physical element for which there is no fault element if—

        (a)     when carrying out the conduct making up the physical element, the person considered whether or not facts existed, and was under a mistaken but reasonable belief about the facts; and

        (b)     had the facts existed, the conduct would not have been an offence.

    (2)     A person may be taken to have considered whether or not facts existed when carrying out conduct if—

        (a)     the person had considered, on a previous occasion, whether the facts existed in the circumstances surrounding that occasion; and

        (b)     the person honestly and reasonably believed that the circumstances surrounding the present occasion were the same, or substantially the same, as the circumstances surrounding the previous occasion.

Note     Section 24 (Absolute liability) prevents this section applying to offences of absolute liability.

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