R v Sinclair

JurisdictionEngland & Wales
Judgment Date05 July 1968
Judgment citation (vLex)[1968] EWCA Crim J0705-2
Date05 July 1968
CourtCourt of Appeal (Criminal Division)
Docket NumberNo. 596/67 No. 597/67

[1968] EWCA Crim J0705-2



Royal Courts of Justice


Lord Justice Widgery

Mr. Justice Lyell


Mr. Justice James

No. 596/67


No. 597/67

Queenswood (Holdings) Limited
Frederick William Smithson

MR. RAYMOND WALTON, Q.C. and MR. F.E.H. GIBBENS appeared on behalf of the Applicants.

MISS E. CURNOW appeared on behalf of the Crown.


Mr. Walton applies on behalf of Queenswood (Holdings) Limited and Frederick William Smithson for leave to appeal to the House of Lords against the judgment of this Court given on the 25th June of this year, and as a preliminary to obtaining such leave asks this Court to certify that a point of law of general public importance arises in the case, namely, whether, in relation to fraud, a direction to the jury based on the "risk" concept which omits all reference to the state of mind of the accused - the knowledge that he had no right to take such risk - is a proper one.


It is unnecessary and unusual in these applications to go back over the facts of the case in detail; but it is noteworthy in this case that the principle of law to be applied was agreed in the course of argument between counsel for the Grown and Mr. Walton appearing for these defendants. In the Court's judgment that principle is stated in two places, more particularly on page 5 of the transcript, the passage from 'C' to 'E'. There is, therefore, so far no question of any principle of law in issue upon which the guidance of the House of Lords is required.


Comment is made, however, that on the last page of the transcript of the judgment where the Court is applying that principle to the facts of the present case a new test is propounded. The passage appears at letter 'A': "He" - the Judge - "properly directed the jury as to the difference between the normal business risks taken honestly and the dishonest risk deliberately taken with knowledge that there was no right to take such risk."


Comment is made that that suggests that the test to distinguish between conduct which is fraudulent and conduct which is not is whether the transaction is a normal transaction. The Court welcomes the opportunity to make it clear that no such test was intended, and, indeed, the normality of the transaction is not the test and was never intended so to be. The distinction is between honesty and dishonesty, and the passage to which I have last...

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34 cases
  • Cheam Tat Pang and Another v Public Prosecutor
    • Singapore
    • High Court (Singapore)
    • 5 Febrero 1996
    ...the offence created under s 157(3) CA was not identical to, nor inconsistent with, a s 409 Penal Code offence. Relying on R v Sinclair [1968] 3 All ER 241, he argued that the appellants were dishonest in having taken a `dishonest risk` with the entrusted funds, such a risk being one which w......
  • R v Grantham
    • United Kingdom
    • Court of Appeal (Criminal Division)
    • 23 Marzo 1984
    ...detriment to him is obvious. 33 If further authority is required that such actions may amount to an intent to defraud, it is to be found in Sinclair (1968) 52 Cr. App. R. 618. In that case the trial Judge had directed the jury: "It is fraud if it is proved that there was the taking of a ris......
  • Scott (Anthony Peter) v Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis
    • United Kingdom
    • Court of Appeal (Criminal Division)
    • 29 Enero 1974
    ...certainly not rejected for it was expressly stated that the statement in question was not exhaustive. 13We were also referred to R. v. Sinclair and others 1968 1 Weekly Law Reports 1246. The charge there was of conspiracy to cheat and defraud a company, its shareholders and creditors by fr......
  • Rous v Mitchell
    • United Kingdom
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 31 Julio 1990
    ...to defraud which does not involve deceit. In the course of delivering the judgment of the Court of Appeal in Reg. v. Sinclair [1968] W.L.R. 1246, where the defendants had been convicted of conspiracy to cheat and defraud a company, its shareholders and creditors by fraudulently using its as......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
1 firm's commentaries
  • Attacking Directors (Or Officers) Of Companies In Business Rescue
    • South Africa
    • Mondaq Southafrica
    • 29 Noviembre 2013
    ...made example of the following three cases, two of which were English and one South African: English cases In R v Sinclair and Others [1968] 3 All ER 241 (CA),a director of a company who dishonestly (ie knowing that he is not entitled to do so) exposed the company's funds to a risk to which ......
2 books & journal articles
  • The Criminal Liabilities of Directors to the Creditors of the Company: Section 458 Companies Act 1985
    • United Kingdom
    • Journal of Financial Crime No. 9-4, April 2002
    • 1 Abril 2002
    ...also approved passages in R v Welham[1960] 1 All ER 805 at p. 808,[1961] AC 103 at p. 123 per Lord Radcliffe. (47) See R v Sinclair[1968] 3 All ER 241,[1968] 1 WLR 1246. R v Allsop (1976) 64 Cr. App. R 29. The court also rejected a contention of the appellant that his actions constituted no......
    • Singapore
    • Singapore Academy of Law Journal No. 2000, December 2000
    • 1 Diciembre 2000
    ...one’s eyes to the obvious. See Baden Delvaux and Lecuit v Societe Generale[1983] BCLC 325, 406 adopting a definition in R v Sinclair[1968] 1 WLR 1246. 14 Guinness v Saunders (1987) 3 BCC 520. 15 Doubts have been expressed in various quarters about whether shareholders really need such prote......

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