Chapter 11
Intention and strict liability

11.1In this chapter, we consider the extent to which established criminal law rules and principles relating to mens rea222 and strict liability223 should apply to pecuniary penalties.
222A Latin term relating to the mental element that must be proved in prosecuting a criminal offence, described in one case as the “intention to do the act which is made penal by statute or by the common law”: Allard v Selfridge [1925] 1 KB 129 at 137.
223A strict liability contravention is one where there is no need for the enforcement agency to prove any element of knowledge on the part of the defendant, but there is a defence if the defendant proves total absence of fault: see Legislation Advisory Committee Guidelines on Process and Content of Legislation (Wellington, 2001) [LAC Guidelines] at [12.2.3].